The Potential of Digital Cash Transfers to Strengthen the Link Between Humanitarian Assistance and Social Protection

Emma Ford, James Copestake

Research output: Working paper

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Abstract

Recent years have seen a rise in the use of cash-based assistance but whilst humanitarian contextslend themselves well to the digitisation of aid, cash assistance remains a very small part ofhumanitarian aid. This white paper examines how the increased use of digital cash transfertechnology which delivers cash to recipients using card-based and mobile phone-based systems, mayprovide potential opportunities for closer collaboration between humanitarian and developmentactors working towards achieving collective, sustainable outcomes, as well as enabling a closer linkbetween state provided social protection and humanitarian cash transfers. However, it argues that,in order to preserve the humanitarian imperative ‘to do no harm’, agencies must take great care tomitigate against the potential negative impacts of the operational challenges of implementing such apolicy. The paper first highlights the potential benefits to the actors involved; second, the operationalissues; and then discusses in greater depth the ways in which digitisation assists increased synergybetween humanitarian assistance and development programmes, also focussing specifically on socialprotection.
Original languageEnglish
PublisherCentre for Development Studies, University of Bath
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017

Publication series

NameBath Papers in International Development and Wellbeing
No.54

Cite this

Ford, E., & Copestake, J. (2017). The Potential of Digital Cash Transfers to Strengthen the Link Between Humanitarian Assistance and Social Protection. (Bath Papers in International Development and Wellbeing; No. 54). Centre for Development Studies, University of Bath.