Impact assessment is a central component of the social protection policy planning process. It is key for identifying gaps and weaknesses in existing social protection provision and a valuable tool for evaluating the potential impact of proposed initiatives.
David McLennan, Director & Senior Research Fellow from UNU-WIDER's partner institute Southern African Social Policy Research Insights (SASPRI) presented the SOUTHMOD Tax-benefit microsimulation model at the Impact Assessment for Social Protection Analysts course, organized by ILO International Training Centre with its partners in Turin, Italy.
An important feature of the course was to consider impact assessment of social protection at a system level. The sessions focusing on the tax-benefit analysis and on the SOUTHMOD model formed an important part of this discussion, by exposing participants to tools that not only consider the impacts of a social protection system, but also the interaction with taxation.
Tax-benefit microsimulation models, which combine representative household-level data on incomes and expenditures and detailed coding of tax and benefit legislation, have proven to be a useful tool for researchers and policy makers alike. The models apply user-defined tax and benefit policy rules to micro-data on individuals and households and calculate the effects of these rules on household income.
The course was attended by 28 participants from across the globe, including Angola, Burundi, Central African Republic, Eswatini, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Togo and Vietnam. Participants were a mix of staff from national governments and international organizations.