Evaluating anti-discrimination measures

Anti-discrimination measures are a key part of poverty eradication policies, and without them, certain categories of people will remain in, or slide back into, poverty. This is the starting-point for this project. It seeks answers to the question: which measures have worked in reducing discrimination against excluded groups and the poorest people, including the poorest children, in lower- and middle-income countries?

In order to answer this question, the project’s methodology includes a systematic review of the literature on this topic, a cross-country quantitative analysis of inequality of outcomes and levels of discrimination, as well as in-depth country evaluations. This process aims at producing a series of outputs:

  • A systematic review and cross country quantitative assessment of inequality of outcomes and levels of discrimination; what information and evaluations already exist of anti-discrimination measures, and how they work
  • Do Anti-Discrimination Measures Reduce Poverty Among Marginalised Social Groups? - a report which investigates how anti-discrimination policies and programmes contributed to reducing poverty among the poorest people? The report has been launched at the Swedish Expert Group for Aid Studies (EBA) seminar on the 10th February 2017 by Rachel Marcus and Andrew Shepherd. A summary of the discussions can be found in the blog post by Dr. Eva Mineur, Programme Manager at the Expert Group For Aid Studies (EBA), Sweden.  A comparative policy analysis on the anti-discrimination measures in education (published by UNU-WIDER)

During Phase I - from 2015 until March 2016 - an Evaluation Partnership was formed of (a) the implementing team at ODI/CPAN, (b) the project’s funders (Save the Children, the Swedish Expert Group for Aid Studies (EBA), the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Unicef UNFPA and (c) leading advisers on anti-discrimination measures, to steer the work. This represents a new approach to evaluation – where the evaluators initiate the evaluation and work in partnership with funders and an expert group - and it will replicate in the second phase of the project. 

A discussion on the research findings of this first phase have been held in the event Reflections on the CPAN event "Anti-discrimination measures: a path out of poverty. I

Since mid 2017, CPAN has started planning for the Phase II of the project, which will focus on continuing the global analysis on anti-discrimination measures. The main objective is to advance learning on what anti-discrimination measures and approaches are most effective with respect to the eradication of extreme poverty and deprivation. This phase of the evaluation will further explore significant gaps evidenced by the rigorous review in phase 1.

Through a focus on discrimination and anti-discrimination measures in labour markets and associated human development services (health, education and social protection) and their impacts on progress towards the eradication of poverty, Phase II will generate more granular evidence concerning the reasons why particular laws and the processes surrounding them  do or do not make an impact. As such the project will develop through a global analysis; and a country case study, which will each inform the other. These will develop through an analysis of the World Values Survey and of surveys using the Washington Group questions on disability which also have questions relating to discrimination. In addition, the analysis will also fed into the Poverty Eradication Policy Preparedness Index database and produce a survey of survey of grey literature to complement the rigorous review already carried out in phase 1. Finally, phase 2 will develop a country study on Nepal. 

Phase II of the project is supported by the Dutch government, the Swedish Expert Group for Aid Studies (EBA), and Save the Children.

Please note CPAN is actively looking for further funding to wide the list of country evaluation studies. Countries of interest include: South Africa, Nepal, Bolivia, Ghana and possibly Sweden as a rich country comparator. 

This work will contribute to the planned Chronic Poverty Report (2018/9) on Social Inclusion through Anti-discrimination and Governance Measures.