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SALDRU people

 

Context

Public works form a key component of the current social protection framework in South Africa, constituting the only form of social support for the able-bodied working age population. Public works programmes are centrally placed in the conceptualisation of social policy space and ascribed considerable potential in terms of addressing the central challenges of unemployment and poverty. Despite this policy prominence, no evidence base is available to attest to the effectiveness of public works, as currently designed in South Africa, to meet these objectives.

 

Objectives

Given the lack of evidence, this research focuses on the question of state intervention to promote employment and reduce poverty through public works, and encompasses three separate strands of work (dealt with in three sub-projects, discussed under the Activities tab). This work examines the nature and impact of public works programmes (PWPs) in Africa and, especially, South Africa.

 

Activities

For the first sub-project, primary data collection was undertaken to evaluate two public works programmes. 

The second sub-project was the establishment of a database of public works programmes in East and Southern Africa, and a detailed review of four country programmes to examine how HIV/AIDS can be incorporated into PWP programmes.

The third sub-project was the analysis of survey findings and development of resources and expertise on PWP impact and incidence in Africa in collaboration with various national and international bodies, including the Centre for the Study of South African Social Policy (CASASP) and the University of Oxford.

 

Outcomes

This project has resulted in a large body of research in the form of publications, conference papers and presentations (listed in the Output and Publications tab). It has also collected primary data on two public works programmes in South Africa, and created a database of PWPs in East and Southern Africa

Publications

 

Briefs

 

Conference papers

 

Unpublished papers

Presentations

Public Works Programmes: Defrauding the Poor?

SALDRU Lunchtime Seminar Series. 26 September 2007

Public Works and Social Protection: What can we expect from the EPWP?

CSSR Seminar Series. 29 September 2005

Economic constraints to the performance of the EPWP

Department for Public Service and Administration. 20 June 2005

Policy Expectations and Programme Reality

CSSR Seminar Series. 9 September 2004

Public Works: Uncut

Prepared for Idasa Forum. 17 August 2004  

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