Social protection

DIE investigates how social protection programmes should be designed in order to reduce multidimensional poverty and inequality while also promoting growth and social cohesion.

Social protection systems play a key role in the development process, since they have not only a social but also an economic and a political function. Their social function is to guarantee a minimum standard of living for everybody and thereby reduce multidimensional poverty and inequality. Their economic function is to prevent people from falling into poverty because of risks such as old age, illness or unemployment. Thereby, social protection systems also encourage people, even those with limited income, to invest their savings in machines or human capital instead of hording them for the case that a risk occurs. In this way, they promote pro-poor growth. And the political function of social protection is to alleviate peoples' concerns about the future, contributing to their general satisfaction and stabilising the political system.
Therefore, DIE seeks answers on the following questions:

  • How should social protection programmeslook like if they are meant to reduce multidimensional poverty and inequality but also promote growth and social cohesion?
  • How can governments (or other actors) provide social protection for a greater share of the world population?
  • What synergies and trade-offs exist between economic and social policies?
  • How do different social protection systems interact?
  • What should multidimensional poverty and inequality indices look like if they are meant to discover possible trade-offs between the effects of social policies on different dimensions of poverty and inequality?
  • What can be done to improve the effectiveness, efficiency and equity of social protection programmes?


The insurability framework applied to agricultural microinsurance: what do we know, what can we learn
Gehrke, Esther(2014)
in: The Geneva Papers on Risk and Insurance: Issues and Practice 39 (2), 264-279


Crowding out of solidarity? Public health insurance versus informal transfer networks in Ghana
Klohn, Florian / Christoph Strupat (2013)
Bochum: Ruhr-Universität Bochum (RUB), Department of Economics (Ruhr Economic Papers 432)


Pension schemes and pension reforms in the Middle East and North Africa
Loewe, Markus (2014)
in: Katja Hujo (ed.), Reforming pensions in developing and transition countries, Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 69-101