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Citizen action can help improve social protection programmes, finds review

30th November 2017: Social accountability initiatives, such as spending audits that involve citizens, can help tackle corruption and improve social protection programmes, a review of the evidence has found.

The evidence on social accountability tools for social protection, which also include grievance mechanisms and committees of beneficiaries, is so far very limited. Development Pathways has carried out research for DFID to start filling the knowledge gaps.

Through a comprehensive literature review and four case studies, our research aims to uncover when and how social accountability initiatives can contribute to better service dleivery in social protection programmes and the strengthening of state-society relations.

In our review of the literature, published today, we reveal how social accountability mechanisms are currently used in social protection programmes. While most programmes have some form of grievance mechanism, at least on paper, these are often more successful at collecting grievances than at resolving them. State action to improve social accountability is often missing.

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