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Burns, J., M. Keswell, and Murray Leibbrandt. 2005. "Social assistance, gender, and the aged in South Africa." Feminist Economics, 11(2): 103-115.
This paper reviews the history of the noncontributory social pension in South Africa, as well as recent work on the distributional and poverty-alleviating effects of this program. The pension has a strong gender dimension, reaching three times as many women as men, and has an unambiguous impact on reducing household poverty, particularly among Black South African households. The existing literature also suggests that the pension reaches unintended beneficiaries within households and that strongly gender-differentiated patterns emerge both in the sharing of pension incomes by pensioners and in the behavioral responses of other household members to pension receipt.
Country of focus: South Africa.