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The Centralization-Decentralization dilemma in selecting beneficiaries of the family grant families: implications and perceptions about Poverty/Vulnerability and justice

Grant number: 12/06367-0
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): June 01, 2012
Effective date (End): December 31, 2013
Field of knowledge:Humanities - Political Science - Public Policies
Principal Investigator:Carolina Raquel Duarte de Mello Justo
Grantee:Isabela Fagundes Cagnin
Host Institution: Centro de Educação e Ciências Humanas (CECH). Universidade Federal de São Carlos (UFSCAR). São Carlos , SP, Brazil


The Family Grant Program is presented by the Ministry of Social Development and Fight Against Hunger as having a decentralized and shared management among federal, state and municipal levels.Municipalities can fit more charges relating to the implementation of the policy, as the register of families, investigation of compliance with conditionalities, management monitoring of beneficiary families, offering infrastructure, education and health, among others. However, you can see through the operation of the program that, among other key aspects, the selection of beneficiary households has a character much more centralized than decentralized, since this is done at the federal level.The general objective of this project is to analyze federative intergovernmental relations in the Family Grant Program management, and more specifically, with regard to the beneficiaries selection process. Would there be a possible increase in effectiveness of the Family Grant Program if this selection was made at the municipal level, taking into account the information that burocracies have about the different local needs? What are the priority criteria used for selection of families at the federal level? Which conceptions about poverty and justice are incorporated into these criteria? What are the implications of such a impersonal selection, in terms of program effectiveness? On the other hand, if the city had more power to select beneficiaries, there would be more likely benefits deviations, serving for reinforcing traditional clientelist and paternalistic actions? The selection option adopted by the Family Grant was best suited to resolve these dilemmas?This project seeks to answer, or at least discuss these issues further. So, it will do an exploratory study in the city of São Carlos. Through interviews with: a) managers of the Family Grant social workers who do the registration in the county, on the one hand, and b) planners and policy makers, responsible for the selection process at the federal level. The prospects and priority criteria between them will be compared in order to recognize and evaluate: 1. º) if their perceptions of poverty / vulnerability and justice, and to what extent, are coincident or not, 2. º ) the possible consequences of using the impersonal method or an alternative one, which could take into account the local perceptions and demands on needs and priority criteria, as well as a decision-making both more personal and dialogical / discursive. (AU)

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