Direct and Indirect Effects of Malawi?S Public Works Program on Food Security

58 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Kathleen Beegle

Kathleen Beegle

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

Emanuela Galasso

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG)

Jessica Goldberg

University of Maryland, Department of Economics

Date Written: December 2, 2015

Abstract

Labor-intensive public works programs are important social protection tools in low-income settings, intended to supplement income of poor households and improve public infrastructure. In this evaluation of the Malawi Social Action Fund, an at-scale, government-operated program, across- and within-village randomization is used to estimate effects on food security and use of fertilizer. There is no evidence that the program improves food security, and some negative spillovers to untreated households. These disappointing results hold even under modifications to the design of the program to offer work during the lean rather than harvest season or increase the frequency of payments.

Keywords: Social Protections & Assistance, Labor Markets, Rural Labor Markets

Suggested Citation

Beegle, Kathleen and Galasso, Emanuela and Goldberg, Jessica, Direct and Indirect Effects of Malawi?S Public Works Program on Food Security (December 2, 2015). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7505, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2698442

Kathleen Beegle (Contact Author)

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG) ( email )

1818 H. Street, N.W.
MSN3-311
Washington, DC 20433
United States

HOME PAGE: http://econ.worldbank.org/staff/kbeegle

Emanuela Galasso

World Bank - Development Research Group (DECRG) ( email )

1818 H. Street, N.W.
MSN3-311
Washington, DC 20433
United States
202-473-3902 (Phone)
202-522-1153 (Fax)

Jessica Goldberg

University of Maryland, Department of Economics ( email )

College Park, MD 20742
United States

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