Social protection as a key tool in crisis management: learnt lessons from the COVID-19 pandemic
Abdoul-Azize, Hamidou Taffa
El Gamil, Rehab
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Worldwide, the social protection programs have become a key tool for policymakers. These programs are executed to achieve multiple objectives such as fighting poverty and hunger, and increasing the resilience of the poor and vulnerable groups towards various shocks. Recently, with the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries started to implement social protection programs to eliminate the negative impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic crisis and enhance community resilience. This study aims to explore the current implementation of social protection programs during the COVID-19 pandemic in the most affected countries as well as to provide learned lessons from countries that had not previously considered implementing social protection programs up until the COVID-19 crisis. This review was carried out by searching through WOS, Google Scholar, ILO, World Bank reports, and Aljazeera Television. The search was conducted over literature and systematic reviews on the implementation of social protection programs during previous pandemic crises and especially in the current COVID-19 pandemic. The findings revealed that social protection programs become a flexible and strategic tool to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Furthermore, the study highlighted a lack of comprehensive strategy amongst the countries in executing the social protection programs to respond to COVID-19. Finally, the study concluded with some learned lessons and implications for the practitioners and policymakers in managing future pandemics.