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A review of Unicef's role in cash transfers to emergency affected populations

Research reports

This paper explores UNICEF’s engagement with cash transfers in emergencies. Its aim is to trigger discussion on the potential role of cash transfers within UNICEF’s response to emergencies.

This paper is part of an ongoing process exploring UNICEF’s engagement with cash-based responses in emergencies. The main aim of the paper is to stimulate discussion on the potential role of cash transfers within UNICEF’s response to emergencies.

The project included three stages: a synopsis of current theory and practice,which formed the basis of interviews with UNICEF staff and others; a discussion document, which was circulated to an internal and external reference group for comments; and the preparation of this paper on the basis of those comments. A wide range of UNICEF staff from all levels of the organization, as well as staff from other agencies with experience in cash transfers, have been interviewed and have commented on the discussion document.

This paper does not provide guidance on how to conduct cash programmes in emergencies, and therefore does not cover determining the size of the cash grant, who to target and targeting methods, or how to deliver cash safely.

Susanne Jaspars, Paul Harvey, Claudia Hudspeth and Lauren Rumble