Graduation programmes aim to provide a sequenced and intensive package of support to very poor people, with the objective of facilitating their movement out of extreme poverty towards resilient and sustainable livelihoods.
The package usually includes regular cash transfers, productive assets, access to savings facilities, livelihood training and coaching. The success of first generation ‘graduation model’ programmes in Bangladesh has prompted pilot projects in several countries in Africa, Asia, Latin America and the Caribbean. This Editorial Introduction reviews alternative conceptualisations of graduation, summarises the evidence on impacts from several project evaluations presented in this IDS Bulletin , and discusses key aspects of design and implementation, including targeting, monitoring, ‘asset?ness’, labour market linkages and the nature of political support for graduation. The editors conclude that graduation programmes are an important and valuable contribution to development policy, but they should not displace the core social protection functions of social assistance and social insurance.
This article comes from the IDS Bulletin 46.2 (2015) Graduating from Social Protection? Editorial Introduction