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Spearheading Cash Transfer Design and Implementation Worldwide

Development Pathways’ experts have experience in both the high-level design of cash transfer programmes and the operational design and technical parameters for programme implementation.

When designing social protection programmes — including in Angola, Bangladesh, Fiji, Indonesia,  Kenya, Lesotho, Rwanda, Uganda and Vietnam — we formulate practical, flexible and simple solutions that are feasible within each context.

Cash transfer programmes, if properly designed and implemented, can constitute essential building-blocks towards inclusive social protection systems in low- and middle-income countries. Hence, we strive to incorporate key principles of dignity, equity, accountability, and privacy of information, among others, in each design.

The end-to-end design of a cash transfer pilot for children we are undertaking in Angola for UNICEF includes the high-level design, determining the benefit transfer value and beneficiary populations and locations. It also entails leading the technical and operational design of the cash transfer, developing: registration mechanisms; payment modality solutions; a communications strategy; operations manuals; a Management Information System, and an implementation human resources strategy.

Development Pathways has also worked closely with UNICEF in Angola to prepare for, launch and finalise a competitive tender for the purposes of selecting Payment Service Providers to roll out financially-inclusive electronic payment solutions for the pilot.

On implementation, we designed an operations manual for the HSNP scheme in Kenya, mapping out the operations across the programme lifecycle, including how each operation is integrated within the MIS. We have designed and implemented a range of management information systems, including for: Zimbabwe’s Harmonised Social Cash Transfer Programme; Uganda’s SAGE programme; and Liberia’s Social Cash Transfer. We also designed a Grievance Mechanism for Zambia’s Social Cash Transfer Programme while advising on the re-design of the programme .

The design of impact evaluations for pilot cash transfer programmes and qualitative research have been core to our work. We have provided theories of change (ToC) for proposed schemes – such as for Australian Aid’s SP sector strategy in Bangladesh and the MAHKOTA Programme in Indonesia, and DFID’s large-scale SP schemes in Bangladesh and Rwanda – and developed ToCs by bringing together the stakeholders involved, to build national ownership.

Development Pathways has established a new Financial Inclusion and Payment Systems practice area. Working in close collaboration with the MIS team, the FISP team will work with our clients to: conduct market scoping and feasibility studies, design and execute electronic payment strategies, engage and work with regulators on enabling regulatory frameworks, and provide technical support during multi-stakeholder procurement and negotiation procedures. The addition of the FISP practice uniquely positions us as a consultancy able to provide an end-to-end solution to clients wishing to launch and or enhance the operational aspects of cash transfer schemes.

With a view to supporting improvements to schemes, we have undertaken a range of reviews, including operational reviews of Fiji’s Child Protection (cash transfer) programme; Uzbekistan’s national social protection system; and Vietnam’s national social assistance system.

Finally, Development Pathways, part think-tank, has also pioneered cutting-edge thinking, including papers describing the operations of cash transfers (for KfW),  how to implement inclusive social protection systems (for UNESCAP), and management information systems (for HelpAge) and set out design considerations from a human rights perspective and a gender perspective.

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