ERF 26th Annual Conference

Community Effects of Cash-for-Work Programmes in Jordan: Effects on Host Communities’ Local Economic Development, Gender Roles, and Social Cohesion






August, 2020


J. Labor and Demographic Economics

O1. Economic Development

The report at hand addresses the indirect effects of Cash-for-Work (CfW) programmes in contexts of flight and migration. Thus, effects on the community level are relevant for us, meaning that not only participants in the programmes benefit from them but that there are also important effects for non-participants. CfW programmes are able to provide a double or even triple dividend, if implemented well: they provide (1) employment and thus income to vulnerable people; (2) infrastructure, as this is where the labour force is put to use; and (3) skills development if explicitly included in the set-up of the programmes. While CfW programmes are quite well-researched in low- and middle-income countries, we know little about their functioning in circumstances of flight and war. The study at hand addresses this gap, analysing CfW programmes’ impact on host communities’ social cohesion, gender roles and local economic development. As Jordan has welcomed between 600,000 and 1.2 million Syrian refugees since 2011, the social fabric of host communities has changed a lot and pressures onto the local labour and housing markets are high, in an already difficult economic situation for most Jordanians.