2012 SEEP Annual Conference Plenary: New Strategies in Building Assets for the Ultra Poor
This was the final plenary session of the 2012 SEEP Annual Conference.
Over the past decade, national governments and development agencies have established and grown a number of social safety net schemes – such as conditional cash transfers – for the ultra-poor. They also have increasingly recognized the importance of sharpening their targeting to create programs specifically adapted to the conditions facing the ultra-poor and to their capacities.
This plenary focused on emerging methodologies designed to assist the ultra-poor to build financial and non-financial assets, including their savings and entrepreneurial skills. In this context, the ultra-poor are defined as those living on $1.25 per day or less. The panelists – including Frank DeGiovanni, Leonardo Alvarez, Carlos Alberto Moya Franco, and Camilla Nestor examined – how microenterprise development and microfinance practitioners can link to and leverage the enormous cash outlays associated with social safety net programs to create asset-building pathways that support sustainable livelihood development by and for the ultra-poor. They also explored how better targeting, when combined with innovative financial inclusion and market facilitation strategies, can strengthen the economic potential of the ultra-poor.