The United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD) initiated a project in 2006 to study the causes, dimensions and dynamics of poverty. It adopts a policy regime approach to examine the complex ways in which poverty outcomes are shaped by the configuration of institutions and policies in a triad of economic development, social policy and politics. It aims to shed light on the institutions, policies and politics that have made some countries more successful than others in reducing poverty. This project builds on earlier UNRISD research on Social Policy in a Development Context, the findings of which challenged the residual role given to social policy in public policies concerned with stabilizing the economies of developing countries and pushing them onto a growth path.
UNRISD organized a workshop in Geneva on 21–23 February 2007 to discuss research themes, case study experiences, methodology and data for this project. A few scholars with outstanding contributions in the fields of poverty, inequality, social policy and development, as well as coordinators for the cases that have been selected for the study, were invited to lead the discussions. Staff from the International Labour Organization (ILO), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and the World Health Organization (WHO) working on poverty and regime types also participated in the workshop.
The workshop was divided into two parts. The first part was thematic, with three sessions covering issues of institutional complementarities, growth strategies and poverty; welfare regimes and poverty; and inequality and poverty. The second part comprised five sessions outlining the case studies in which in-depth research will be carried out.
The presentations from this workshop are accessible via the link in the top right corner of this page. The edition of Conference News detailing the discussions is available here.