Advising Zambia’s Social Cash Transfer Program (SCTP)

Client: Zambia Ministry of Community Development and Social Services (MCDSS)
Location: Zambia
Sector: Social Protection
Dates of service: August 2018 - August 2020
IDinsight service: Data analysis, process evaluation, capacity building, advisory services
IDinsight contacts: Chris Chibwana, Kevin Kelsey
Status: Active

The Problem

Zambia’s SCTP provides a bi-monthy unconditional transfer to ultra-poor households in an effort to reduce vulnerability, inequality, and the intergenerational transfer of poverty. An RCT conducted by UNICEF has shown that the transfer improves household consumption and other metrics of livelihood.

The government seeks evidence on how to increase the impact of the SCTP. Research from other countries suggests that the impact of cash transfer programs can be amplified when linked to other social programs that complement the cash transfer (“cash plus”). However, Zambian policies currently limit the overlap and coordination between different social protection programs, and it is unclear if the cash plus agenda is feasible, acceptable, and impactful in the Zambian context.

Evidence Needs

IDinsight Service

IDinsight has entered into a two-year partnership with the Zambia MCDSS in order to provide data and research support to improve the social cash transfer program (SCTP). As with other Learning Partnerships, we use a broad analytical toolkit to provide a variety of services to address the needs of MCDSS. In particular, we hope to evaluate various pilots MCDSS is planning to conduct in order to better integrate social protection programming in Zambia.


The project is ongoing.