BOLSA FAMÍLIA AND BRAZIL: A NON-SYSTEMATIC LITERATURE REVIEW
This paper provides a synthesis of some of the current evidence on the outcomes of Brazil’s Bolsa Família program in uprooting the poorest of the poor from extreme poverty and breaking intergenerational transmission of poverty. The literature was reviewed in an effort to provide some clarity on the ongoing debate regarding what Bolsa Família truly is, what it has achieved and the way forward. A review of the literature shows a clear need to better understand results achieved, elucidate false premises and point the way ahead. The synthesis revolves around three main sections: i) what Bolsa Família is; ii) the present situation, that is, what it has achieved this far; and iii) six false assumptions regarding the program that have been largely refuted by recent research. I close the paper with the main ideas regarding the future of the public policy and a brief conclusion.