With a new theory of change that sees poverty as a human rights issue, human rights-based approaches (HRBAs) are now a rising discourse in poverty alleviation. One of the elements of these HRBAs is participation, hence the increasing attention to the integration of participatory channels in poverty alleviation programs like CCTs. With this being a new element, what it offers development as a result remains uncertain. The purpose of the study is then to problematize the process of participation in one case that has recently included participatory channels: the Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program of the Philippines. This is in order to offer insights on whether participation of cash transfer beneficiaries indeed brings transformative and sustainable effects on poverty alleviation or simply reinforces instances of exclusion. Employing mixed methods, this study sets the policy context through a descriptive analysis of quantitative data; and gathers insights on the conceptualization, recent practices, and narratives of participation by means of in-depth qualitative interviews. In problematizing the process, the study finds that the highly normative conceptualization of participation is at odds with poverty as a human rights issue and even translates to power abuses by local elites. Recent practices of participation, meanwhile, reinforce gendered roles of women and perpetuate vulnerabilities of the more marginalized groups in the community. Conflicting narratives on the transformative effects and sustainability of participation also tell us about limitations of short-lived poverty interventions shaped by power elites and raises questions on whether participation is an exercised right or just another string attached. Lastly, while this study offers new insights on the right to participation in CCTs, moving forward includes reconciling the tensions between targeted social protection schemes and the principles of HRBAs.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Social protection, conditional cash transfers, poverty, human rights, human rights-based approach (HRBA), participation, Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps), Project I-Pantawid
Thesis Advisor María Gabriela Palacio Ludeña
Persistent URL hdl.handle.net/2105/51326
Series Social Justice Perspectives (SJP)
Ethel Monique T. Domingo. (2019, December 20). A right or just another string attached? problematizing the process of participation in the Philippine Conditional Cash Transfer Program. Social Justice Perspectives (SJP). Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/2105/51326