Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/163058
Authors: 
Seekings, Jeremy
Year of Publication: 
2017
Series/Report no.: 
WIDER Working Paper 2017/83
Abstract: 
Botswana's welfare state is both a parsimonious laggard in comparison with some other middle-income countries in Africa (such as Mauritius and South Africa) and extensive (in comparison with its low-income neighbours to the north and east). Coverage is broad but cash transfers are modest. This reflects distinctively conservative features - including, especially, preferences for workfare and for minimal benefits paid in kind (food) rather than cash - combined with parsimonious cash transfers for select categories of deserving poor (the elderly and orphans), administered through the Department of Local Government, not a dedicated welfare department. This is a very different model of welfare state-building - and, more generally, social contract - to those of its neighbours in Southern Africa. It is the result of the specific character of poverty in Botswana and the enduring, but not unchallenged, political dominance of the conservatively paternalist Botswana Democratic Party.
Subjects: 
social protection
drought relief
Botswana
conservatism
dependency
welfare state
poverty reduction
JEL: 
P16
I38
O55
H53
J14
Q25
Persistent Identifier of the first edition: 
ISBN: 
978-92-9256-307-3
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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