Building Shock-Responsive National Social Protection Systems in the MENA Region

Despite a situation of an active violent conflict, the Yemen Emergency Crisis Response Project continues to deliver services and cash to the poor and vulnerable nationwide. This paper captures lessons learned from this innovative and pioneering project, which will be particularly relevant for shaping the World Bank's crisis response under IDA 18.

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The productive impacts of transfer programmes have received increased attention. However, little is known about such effects in emergency and crisis settings. Even less is known about whether transfer type – a food basket or a cash grant – influences the productive potential of such transfers. Theory suggests that, while cash transfers can relieve liquidity constraints associated with investments, subsidized food provision, by acting as a form of insurance, may prevent households from retreating to conservative income-generating strategies during volatile periods.

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