1+1 = 3? Emerging Findings from a Systematic Review of the Economic Multipliers of Cash Transfers

Joint Seminar organized by UNU-MERIT and the World Bank’s Social Protection & Jobs Global Practice.

Join us on 13 December for the presentation of the paper "1+1 = 3? Emerging Findings from a Systematic Review of the Economic Multipliers of Cash Transfers", coauthored by Franziska Gassman, Ugo Gentilini, Julieta Morais, Conrad Nunnenmacher, Yuko Okamura
and Giulio Bordon.


The multiplier effects of cash transfers are receiving renewed attention globally. The existence of multipliers — or the generation of additional dollars for every $1 injected as cash transfers — illuminates new aspects on the impacts of social assistance and holds the potential to redefine how “fiscal sustainability” is generally interpreted. However, multipliers also attract a number of questions: are multipliers real and tangible? How are multipliers estimated? What method might be more suitable than others in different contexts? What does the evidence tell us about those effects? This talk summarizes emerging findings from a draft new paper jointly produced by teams at Maastricht University and World Bank’s SPJ GP. The paper systematically reviews existing literature on the economic multipliers of cash transfers in low and middle income countries, including based on a total of 24 studies. The seminar will discuss main estimation methods, such as social accounting matrix (SAM) and econometric techniques, present results on multipliers across studies, and draw lessons for future research and practice.

Chair: Ugo Gentilini, Global Lead for Social Safety Nets GSG, Social Protection & Jobs GP

Presenter: Franziska Gassmann, Professor of Social Protection and Development, UNU-MERIT & Maastricht University


  • Rob Chase, Practice Manager, SPJ Africa East, Social Protection & Jobs GP.
  • Stephan Dietrich, UNU-MERIT & Maastricht University.


JOIN USING WEBEX: Meeting number: 2302 931 8828 – Meeting password: reM4rC3HBP4

JOIN USING PHONE: Toll #: +1 (650) 479-3207 – Access code: 2302 931 8828

Venue: Online

Date: 13 December 2022

Time: 16:00  CEST