Transforming Humanitarian Aid with Cash Transfers – Podcast with Degan Ali and Owen Barder

September 15, 2015

How can we make humanitarian aid better? Give refugees cash. That’s the main recommendation of a high level panel convened by the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), and chaired by CGD’s Owen Barder. You can read his blog on the Panel’s report here.

The report is very timely, as tragic images from Europe remind us of the scale and urgency of the global humanitarian crisis. But while European governments agonize over how to deal with the thousands of mainly Syrian refugees seeking safe haven and a better life, we must remember that  many more refugees are not on the move – but stuck in refugee camps or informal settlements around the world.

The Panel says we can help them better by giving them cash. How would that work? What have trials taught us? And what are the problems? 

I’m joined by two members of the Panel: Degan Ali, Executive Director of African NGO Adeso, and CGD’s Owen Barder.


CGD blog posts reflect the views of the authors, drawing on prior research and experience in their areas of expertise. CGD is a nonpartisan, independent organization and does not take institutional positions.