[Abstract] Converting Eligibility Into Participation: How Income Insecurity Drives Social Policy Demand in Developing Countries

Expanding social protection to all is a policy priority in developing countries. Nevertheless, compliance still varies across countries and policy domains. This paper argues for a neglected aspect: income insecurity. I find that income insecurity makes individuals desire more certain, immediate benefits rather than uncertain future benefits. Such short-term and certainty-biased behavioral tendency, in turn, makes vulnerable households prefer less old-age protection due to the long time-horizon associated with such benefits. The effect is most obvious among non-poor households. I draw on data from household panel studies and original survey data in Indonesia.

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