OVERVIEW Eﬀorts are being made in many African countries to establish improved coordinating mechanisms for social protection. Coordination is about the way that diﬀerent bodies involved in social protection, within institutions and across institutions, interact with each other to share information, determine roles and competencies, avoid duplication of eﬀort and establish funding priorities. Coordination can have a signiﬁcant bearing on the adequacy of coverage of diﬀerent vulnerable groups achieved by social protection. In its absence, coverage is likely to be accidental and patchy, driven more by the diverse interests of NGOs or the unreliable enthusiasms of donors than by a considered oversight of the social and geographical distribution of those most in need in a country. Coordination is a complicated aspect of social protection because it is needed at many diﬀerent organizational levels and also requires an understanding of history and politics to explain the forms it takes in diﬀerent countries at diﬀerent times. In terms of organizational levels, coordination can occur at levels from an overall overseeing capability in central government down to the practical coordination between partner organizations required to deliver a particular type of social transfer to a deﬁned group of beneﬁciaries. In between these there are many intermediate levels of coordination that may involve collaboration and information sharing between some institutions but not others. One kind of intermediate level coordination that is prevalent in the region is a national committee or programme centred around a particular...
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