Adaptive Social Protection

Poor and vulnerable people in developing countries are facing ever greater and deeper shocks and stresses to their livelihoods. These include those of a global nature, such as the 2007 financial crisis, as well as more localised ones, for example floods and droughts. All make it increasingly difficult for poor people’s usual coping and risk-management strategies to prove effective in protecting their livelihoods – with often dire implications for their wellbeing.

Interventions in the fields of Social Protection, Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction all aim to reduce vulnerability to such shocks. But so far these three communities of practice have worked in isolation. Adaptive Social Protection recognises that greater integration and knowledge sharing among these three communities of practice would increase the chance to have more impact on people’s vulnerability and help them escape poverty.

About the ASP programme

The Adaptive Social Protection in the Context of Agriculture and Food Security Programme (ASP Programme) explores and highlights the benefits of an interlinked approach to risk reduction and resilience building in rural areas of developing countries. It takes into account evidence from social protection, climate change adaptation and disaster risk reduction in order to help governments, practitioners and development agencies reduce poor people’s vulnerability to the impacts of climate change and other shocks.

The ASP Programme is managed by and based at the Centre for Social Protection (CSP) which is based at IDS. It is funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID).

Join the ASP network and sign up to the ASP newsletter by emailing: [email protected]

See the Eldis Key Issues guide on adaptive social protection for more information.

Project details

start date
4 January 2010
end date
30 November 2012


About this project

Programmes and centres
Centre for Social Protection

Recent work


Realising the Potential of Adaptive Social Protection

The concept of Adaptive Social Protection (ASP) – an approach that promotes greater integration between Social Protection, Climate Change Adaptation and Disaster Risk Reduction to make a meaningful contribution towards sustainable development – is well understood.

11 October 2012

Working Paper

Resilience: New Utopia or New Tyranny?

Resilience is becoming influential in development and vulnerability reduction sectors such as social protection, disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation. Policy makers, donors and international development agencies are now increasingly referring to the term.

4 October 2012


Making Social Protection ‘Climate-Smart’

IDS In Focus Policy Briefing 27

Adaptive Social Protection (ASP) aims to reduce the vulnerability of poor people to a range of shocks and ongoing stresses through the integration of social protection (SP), climate change adaptation (CCA) and disaster risk reduction (DRR).

3 October 2012