Innovating and Scaling with Governments

How can we ensure anti-poverty programs are doing the most good for those who need them? One important step is to invest in scaling successful innovations within these programs. With government-led poverty alleviation programs reaching millions of people worldwide, these programs can model how cost-effective solutions can make significant strides to end poverty. However, innovating and scaling interventions within these programs often bring challenges, particularly when bureaucratic processes are not designed to promote it.

ideas42 has spent the last decade working with 10 governments across sub-Saharan Africa to design and embed behavioral interventions into their cash transfer programs. We designed these interventions so cash transfer programs could better help recipients set and reach their financial goals, such as saving and income generation, as well as human development goals, such as education, nutrition, and child development (see Box 1). Through consistent collaboration and deep commitment to the cause, our light-touch behavioral interventions have reached over half a million cash transfer recipients to date. In this toolkit, we draw from our experience in scaling these interventions with governments to provide actionable tips on how to successfully partner with governments to create and scale innovative solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems.