The purpose of this project, is to develop a conceptual framework to improve the understanding of vulnerability to chronic poverty and malnutrition in Malawi. This should support the review and development of relevant policies and programmes by the Government of Malawi and its development partners. The work had two phases. The objectives of the first phase were to review available evidence and thinking on the poverty and vulnerability context in Malawi, and to develop an evidence-based conceptual framework. Objectives of the second phase were to elaborate and test the framework empirically, by drawing on the 2004/5 Integrated Household Survey (IHS-2) and other datasets, to strengthen the analysis and refine the conceptual framework as developed in Phase I. The overall intention was to draw out implications for social protection programming in Malawi. Much of this analytical work was also desk-based, but was informed by engagement with policy-makers in Malawi, and with the Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment (PVA) team, led by the World Bank.