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Understanding the Impact and Implications of Fiscal Austerity for the Implementation of Ghana’s School Feeding Programme and Social Investment Strategy

Mohammed, Abdul-Rahim (2019) Understanding the Impact and Implications of Fiscal Austerity for the Implementation of Ghana’s School Feeding Programme and Social Investment Strategy. PhD thesis, University of Sheffield.

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Following the 2008 US banking and financial crisis, the global economy was thrown into a recession. Ultimately, the crisis resulted in many governments in both the North and South adopting austerity programmes. In the case of Ghana, the country’s economy contracted, following which the government adopted fiscal austerity programmes. Although the discourse on austerity has blanketed news headlines and the academe of the Global North, such discussions are almost non-existent in many countries in the Global South, especially in Sub-Saharan Africa. At best, the extant literature on the impact of austerity has focused on macroeconomic issues for example. There has been less scholarly attention paid, however, to the impact of austerity for the delivery of public services and the implication this has at the micro level such as schools. This thesis thus aims to understand the impacts of Ghana’s fiscal austerity for the delivery of the Ghana School Feeding Programme (GSFP) and the implications this has for schoolchildren. A qualitative case study of two state primary schools in northern Ghana is the research strategy adopted by this thesis. The data analysis is based on three main sets of data: 1. In-depth semi-structured interviews with frontline service providers of the GSFP, head teachers of two primary schools, parents, students and experts; 2. Focus Group Discussions with teachers in both schools; and 3. Field observation. Based on these data, the findings suggest that fiscal austerity has defined and conditioned the service delivery environment, with service providers relying on their discretion to adopt unsanctioned coping strategies as they deliver the service within austerity. The findings also suggest that these coping strategies ultimately undermine the school feeding policy intent and goals. Moreover, the results show that schoolchildren in northern Ghana routinely experience food insecurity in the school, with significant implications for teaching and learning as these students rely on their thinned agency to resist school and refuse the meals served.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Fiscal Austerity, Social Investment, Ghana School Feeding Programme, Food Insecurity.
Academic Units: The University of Sheffield > Faculty of Social Sciences (Sheffield) > Sociological Studies (Sheffield)
Identification Number/EthosID: uk.bl.ethos.794209
Depositing User: Mr Abdul-Rahim Mohammed
Date Deposited: 24 Dec 2019 10:03
Last Modified: 01 Feb 2020 10:53
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/25541

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