How inclusive are the local economic impacts of social protection in Uganda

Maria Klara Kuss, Franziska Gassmann*, Firminus Mugumya

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Inclusive growth and development are essential for the sustainability of poverty reduction and growth. Social protection has been promoted as part of the inclusive growth and development agenda by emphasising the positive impacts of social transfers on people’s participation in economic processes. However, the focus on the positive economic impacts of social transfers has led to the neglect of concerns regarding inequality of opportunity. Taking the case of Uganda’s Senior Citizens Grant, this paper critically assesses how inclusive the impacts of social transfers are on economic processes. This is done by examining the extent to which local economic structures interplay with the impacts of the Grant. Based on a qualitative case study design, the analysis reveals that the scheme has unwittingly reinforced spatial patterns of economic exclusion and disadvantage. Recipients in remote areas are more likely to stay or fall back into poverty compared to people in integrated areas. For social transfers to contribute to inclusive growth and development for all, it will be vital to invest in complementary development interventions in economically disadvantaged areas.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2156-2178
Number of pages23
JournalEuropean Journal of Development Research
Issue number5
Early online date15 Nov 2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2022

JEL classifications

  • i38 - "Welfare and Poverty: Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs"
  • o15 - "Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration"


  • Economic impact
  • Social protection
  • Uganda
  • Inclusive growth and development
  • Social cash transfers
  • Sub-Sahara Africa
  • Inequality of opportunity
  • Local economic impacts


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