Recht in Afrika (Dec 2017)

Traditional Forms of Social Protection in Africa: Selected Examples from Ethiopian and Eritrean Societies

  • Hatem Elliesie

Journal volume & issue
Vol. 20, no. 1
pp. 58 – 73


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The range of actors involved in providing social protection in Africa is considerably more diverse than is reflected in the current round of policy formulation. Accordingly, a fairly comprehensive view of social protection should be considered. Since scholarly research and institutional stakeholders have been primarily concerned with Western concepts of formal statutory programs, insights to traditional community based forms have been widely neglected on the international agendas of development co-operation. Questions on how people without access to top-down approaches cope with contingencies have to be addressed. Therefore, the discourses’ focus has to transcend the apparently ideal typical point of reference for discussing social policies. In respect thereof, the following paper illustrates selected customary mechanisms of social protection in Ethiopia and Eritrea.