The economic impacts of a social pension on recipient households with unequal access to markets in Uganda

Maria Klara Kuss, Patrick Llewellin & Franziska Gassmann


This paper analyses the differences in the economic impacts of social cash transfers (SCT) on recipients in remote and integrated areas. Using a mixed methods-research design and the case of Uganda's Senior Citizens Grant (SCG), the paper confirms that structural circumstances (such as market access) shape the economic outcomes of cash transfers for recipients. The findings of our case study show that there are vital differences in the dominant function of the SCG between recipient households living in areas with unequal structural circumstances. Recipient households in integrated areas are more likely to exploit the promotive potential of SCTs, while recipient households in remote areas utilise the SCT in a more protective manner. However, the findings also indicate that at times even recipient households in integrated areas are unable to tap into the promotive potential of SCTs given the limitations associated with their age and fragility.

Keywords: Cash transfers, social pension, market access, livelihood outcomes, Uganda

JEL Classification: H53, H55, I38

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