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SPACE The Potential Role of Economic Inclusion Programmes to Respond to Those Affected by COVID-19

30 September 2020 — By Edward Archibald, with Laura Alfers, Courtenay Cabot Venton, Colin Andrews, Aude de Montesquiou, Puja Vasudeva Datta, and input from experts on the Social Protection Approaches to COVID-19: Expert Advice Helpline (SPACE)

COVID-19 is accentuating the risks facing an increasing number of poor and vulnerable individuals and households in a myriad of ways. As the effects of the crisis evolve, many actors are considering whether and how to complement social assistance measures with additional inputs, components and linkages – including economic inclusion approaches – to help mitigate the impacts of the pandemic and move towards early economic recovery. This paper therefore explores the opportunities and challenges of economic inclusion approaches alongside social assistance responses in the COVID-19 context. It shows how evidence can inform the design of measures to help people recover from the impacts of the pandemic over the medium- and longer-term through the lens of government-led economic inclusion programmes which leverage national social protection systems.