Lessons to date: A Cochrane Review of household food security and social protection programmes in high-income and emerging market economies

Sinéad Furey, Rebecca Lindberg, Amber Bastian

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperpeer-review

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Background and aim:
Social protection is a key element of sustainable poverty reduction strategies. “Everyone, as a member of society, has the right to social security […]. Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services, and the right of security in the event of unemployment, sickness, disability, widowhood, old age or other lack of livelihood in circumstances beyond his control” (Articles 22 and 25, The Universal Declaration of Human Rights).

Without social protection, people become more prone to economic insecurity and social exclusion and hence more vulnerable to remain in poverty. Social protection is an economically beneficial policy fostering greater productivity, and consequently increased inclusive growth and social cohesion. Yet, according to ILO estimates, 73 per cent of the world population lacks adequate social
protection, thus denying individuals their rights and dignity.

Description of session
Social protection floors are basic levels of social protection that should be guaranteed to all. Defined at the national level, they should at least provide essential health care throughout the life course; social protection for all children; income security to all people of working age in the case of unemployment, maternity, disability, and work injury; and pensions for all older persons. This symposium will present evidence from countries that have implemented national social protection systems including Somalia, Brazil, Italy, Ethiopia and Kerela (India). Presenters will present the strengths and weaknesses of the social protection system and what they believe would improve their national social protection system.

Significance Not addressing social protection will result in growing inequalities and will prevent several SDGS not being achieved. There will then be time for delegates to ask questions and discuss the challenges of achieving the social protection targets set for the Decade of Nutrition.


  • Decade of Nutrition
  • Social protection
  • Cash transfers
  • Reducing inequalities
  • Political will and action


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