Pakistan Institute of Development Economics

Working Paper 2022:8
Weather Shocks, Unconditional Cash Transfers and Household Food Outcomes
Publication Year : 2022

ABSTRACT

Weather shocks have become a colossal threat to Pakistan due to its limited financial and technical ability to mitigate and adapt to extreme weather events. These threats are expected to be increasingly scaled up in the coming years. Food insecurity is one of the most significant aspects of household wellbeing, directly affected by climatic variability. The ultra-poor segment of households is highly susceptible to increasing weather shocks. In such a scenario, the role of the Benazir Income Support Program (BISP) cash transfer scheme is inevitably essential. Hence, this study explores the moderating role of BISP unconditional cash transfer against the adverse impacts of climatic variability on calorie intakes and food diversity scores of poor households. Tehsil level weather shocks are merged with the four waves of the household survey dataset. The application of tehsil fixed effect indicates the adverse effects of shocks in rainfall and temperature norms on food outcomes. Likewise, the results estimated from instrumental tehsil fixed effect (IV-TFE) demonstrate that BISP cash transfer plays a significant moderating role against rainfall and temperature shocks to determine the food outcomes of the program’s beneficiaries.

Working Paper 2022:8
Weather Shocks, Unconditional Cash Transfers and Household Food Outcomes
Publication Year : 2022

ABSTRACT

Weather shocks have become a colossal threat to Pakistan due to its limited financial and technical ability to mitigate and adapt to extreme weather events. These threats are expected to be increasingly scaled up in the coming years. Food insecurity is one of the most significant aspects of household wellbeing, directly affected by climatic variability. The ultra-poor segment of households is highly susceptible to increasing weather shocks. In such a scenario, the role of the Benazir Income Support Program (BISP) cash transfer scheme is inevitably essential. Hence, this study explores the moderating role of BISP unconditional cash transfer against the adverse impacts of climatic variability on calorie intakes and food diversity scores of poor households. Tehsil level weather shocks are merged with the four waves of the household survey dataset. The application of tehsil fixed effect indicates the adverse effects of shocks in rainfall and temperature norms on food outcomes. Likewise, the results estimated from instrumental tehsil fixed effect (IV-TFE) demonstrate that BISP cash transfer plays a significant moderating role against rainfall and temperature shocks to determine the food outcomes of the program’s beneficiaries.