Use the "back" button of your browser to return to the list of abstracts.
IDEAS AND THE EVOLUTION OF SOCIAL PROTECTION IN ETHIOPIA: THE PRODUCTIVE SAFETY NET PROGRAMME AND COMMUNITY-BASED HEALTH INSURANCE [Abstract ID: 0308-07]
Ethiopia has taken significant steps to expand social protection provision over the last decade or so, notably including the Productive Safety Net Programme (PSNP) which supports some 8 million people, as well as the expansion of the Community Based Health Insurance programme (CBHI) to some 11 million people. The existing literature has identified and discussed the important role played by transnational actors in promoting social protection in developing countries over this period, with some critics suggesting that this is a primarily donor-driven process. This paper examines the social protection policymaking process in Ethiopia from an ideational perspective, focusing on the extent to which ideas promoted by transnational actors have influenced Ethiopian policy debates. The analysis comprises case studies of the decision making process surrounding the PSNP, CBHI and the National Social Protection Policy, based on more than 60 key informant interviews with senior Ethiopian politicians and bureaucrats, as well as key donor officials. The paper concludes that while transnational ideas have been important inputs into policy, these ideas are not adopted uncritically. Rather, the Ethiopian government, and in particular political elites at the very highest levels, have selected policy models that fit existing government objectives and have consciously sought to adapt these policy models to ensure consistency with the government overarching developmental vision. The result is a distinctively ‘productivist’ approach to social protection in line with the ‘developmental state’ ambitions of the ruling party.