Issue 5 June 2011
UNRISD is an autonomous institution within the UN system that carries out multidisciplinary research on the social dimensions of contemporary development issues.


Katja Hujo
Policy debates on implementing and expanding social policies in developing countries often revolve around costs and affordability. Some contend that poor countries cannot afford to provide public social services due to a lack of fiscal resources. Yet UNRISD research shows that universal social policies are not only more cost-efficient but also have better delivery with regard to social development. Read more.


Protecting Care Workers: Parvati Raghuram

Global care chains have resulted in women migrating to more developed countries, where their status is not regularized, leaving them open to abuse. This makes it absolutely crucial to establish international conventions to ensure the rights of these transnational workers.
Listen to the podcast on RealPlayer or iTunes.


Will Democracy Spell the End for Tunisian Women’s Rights?

Kristine Goulding
Through protesting, organizing and blogging, women were visible and effective in the popular revolts in Tunisia. Will this post-revolution environment yield empowering outcomes? Or will democracy be used as a veiled threat to signal the end of women's rights? Kristine Goulding looks at the implications of the elections.

The Future of Social Policy

Ilcheong Yi
How should we challenge theories that claim an inherent antagonism between economic growth and egalitarian social policy? What issues should be addressed in order to establish desirable social policies and welfare states in developing countries? Ilcheong Yi presents a comprehensive, seven-pronged approach.

Rebuilding Cote d’Ivoire: Lessons from Sierra Leone

Yusuf Bangura
What is the best way to help rebuild Côte d’Ivoire, now that the new government has taken power? Yusuf Bangura draws lessons from Sierra Leone’s post-conflict experience to suggest ways in which Côte d’Ivoire can move past the recent conflict and improve the lives of its citizens.


How Sida Incorporates UNRISD’s Work: An Interview with the Swedish Development Agency

Katri Pohjolainen Yap, Senior research advisor at Sida, discusses Sida's 30-year support for UNRISD and the future challenges for social development.
Listen to the podcast on RealPlayer or iTunes.

Nancy Folbre on Feminist Economics, Care and the Demonstrating the Impact of Research

Nancy Folbre—a well-known scholar on the economics of the family and care—was interviewed by Shahra Razavi for Development & Change.

UNRISD Flagship report reviewed in Development & Change

"The UNRISD Flagship Report stands out for its historical approach, its clear stance against market-based neoliberal solutions, and its understanding of poverty in terms of social, economic and political processes."


Pro-Poor Business, Development and Smallholder Empowerment

Do fair trade, CSR and inclusive business approaches facilitate or enhance small-scale producer empowerment, or are corporations benefiting at the expense of small-scale farmers? What role do farmer autonomy, voice and participation play in shaping or resisting the types of pro-poor business approaches being advocated? These questions and more will be addressed on 22 June at the European Parliament in Brussels. The event, co-hosted by UNRISD, will also be available online.

Green Economy and Sustainable Development: Bringing Back the Social Dimension

The social dimensions of development are important in understanding the connections between green economy, sustainable development and poverty eradication. By bringing together United Nations representatives and policy makers, academics and representatives of civil society, the UNRISD Conference on 10–11 October will create a forum for dialogue and analysis that aims to position social dimensions at the centre of debates on green economy and sustainable development.


Assessing the Structure of Small Welfare States: Social Policies in Small States Series, No. 4

Geoff Bertram
How do the characteristics of small states influence their pursuit of a welfare state? When a significant proportion of the population migrates and sends remittances home, facilitating international mobility becomes central to social policy, and the welfare state tends to focus on the labour market.

Social Policies in Malta: Social Policies in Small States Series, No. 3

Rose Marie Azzopardi
Malta is a high-income developed small state, which provides social services, such as free health and education, to all its citizens. However, various national and global factors are now threatening the sustainability of this extensive social security model. How can the lessons learned from the social development strategies adopted by the state inform future policy decisions?

Global Civil Society Movements in the Philippines

Teresa S. Encarnacion Tadem (ed.)
The Philippines makes an interesting case for examining direct and collective acts of contention against the neoliberal project of economic globalization. Crippled by foreign debt, indiscriminate liberalization of trade, falling stock markets, and corruption, the Philippines is also a democratic polity with a vibrant and dynamic civil society sector.

Religion, Politics and Gender Equality

Research and Policy Brief 11
How does religion, as a political force, shape and deflect the struggle for gender equality in contexts marked by different histories of nation building and challenges of ethnic/religious diversity; state-society relations (from the more authoritarian to the more democratic); and relations between state power and religion?

Combating Poverty and Inequality: Structural Change, Social Policy and Politics

NEW! The Flagship Report is now available as a Kindle edition from Amazon.
Printed copies are available from UN Publications.
Download free from the UNRISD website.

Publications from UNRISD Researchers

The Korean State and Social Policy
Stein Ringen, Huck-ju Kwon, Ilcheong Yi, Taekyoon Kim and Jooha Lee How did the Republic of Korea move from being an impoverished country with an authoritarian regime to an affluent, stable democracy over several decades? The authors answer these questions by looking at the authoritarian regime from a social policy perspective.


United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD)
Palais des Nations
1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland
Tel: ++41 (0)22 917 3020

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