Advertisement

The Measurement of Multidimensional Poverty

  • François BourguignonEmail author
  • Satya R. Chakravarty
Chapter
Part of the Themes in Economics book series (THIE)

Abstract

Many authors have insisted on the necessity of defining poverty as a multidimensional concept rather than relying on income or consumption expenditures per capita. Yet, not much has actually been done to include the various dimensions of deprivation into the practical definition and measurement of poverty. Existing attempts along that direction consist of aggregating various attributes into a single index through some arbitrary function and defining a poverty line and associated poverty measures on the basis of that index. This is merely redefining more generally the concept of poverty, which then essentially remains a one-dimensional concept. The present paper suggests that an alternative way to take into account the multidimensionality of poverty is to specify a poverty line for each dimension of poverty and to consider that a person is poor if he/she falls below at least one of these various lines. The paper then explores how to combine these various poverty lines and associated one-dimensional gaps into multidimensional poverty measures. An application of these measures to the rural population in Brazil is also given with poverty defined on income and education.

Keywords

Multidimensional Poverty measure 

References

  1. Atkinson, A., & Bourguignon, F. (1982). The comparison of multidimensioned distributions of economic status. The Review of Economic Studies, 49, 183–201.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Blackorby, C., & Donaldson, D. (1980). Ethical indices for the measurement of poverty. Econometrica, 48, 1053–1060.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Bourguignon, F., & Fields, G. S. (1997). Discontinuous losses from poverty, generalized Pα measures, and optimal transfers to the poor. Journal of Public Economics, 63, 155–175.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Chakravarty, S. R. (1990). Ethical Social Index Numbers. London: Springer-Verlag.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Chakravarty, S. R., Mukherjee, D., & Ranade, R. (1998). On the family of subgroup and factor decomposable measures of multidimensional poverty. Research on Economic Inequality, 8, 175–194.Google Scholar
  6. Clark, S., Hemming, R., & Ulph, D. (1981). On indices for the measurement of poverty. The Economic Journal, 91, 515–526.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Cowell, F. A. (1988). Poverty measures, inequality and decomposability. In D. Bös, M. Rose, & C. Seidl (Eds.), Welfare and efficiency in public economics. London: Springer-Verlag.Google Scholar
  8. Donaldson, D., & Weymark, J. A. (1986). Properties of fixed population poverty indices. International Economic Review, 27, 667–688.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Duclos, J.-Y., Sahn, D., & Younger, S. (2001). Robust multi-dimensional poverty comparisons. Mimeo: Cornell University.Google Scholar
  10. Elbers, C., Lanjouw, J., Lanjouw, P., & Leite, P. G. (2001). Poverty and inequality in Brazil: new estimates from combined PPV-PNAD data. World Bank, DECRG, Mimeo.Google Scholar
  11. Foster, J. E. (1984). On economic poverty: A survey of aggregate measures. In R. L. Basman & G. F. Rhodes (Eds.), Advances in econometrics (Vol. 3). Connecticut: JAI Press.Google Scholar
  12. Foster, J., Greer, J., & Thorbecke, E. (1984). A class of decomposable poverty measures. Econometrica, 52, 761–765.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Foster, J., & Shorrocks, A. F. (1991). Subgroup consistent poverty indices. Econometrica, 59, 687–709.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Kakwani, N. C. (1980). On a class of poverty measures. Econometrica, 48, 437–446.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Kolm, S. C. (1977). Multidimensional egalitarianisms. Quart. J. Econom., 91, 1–13.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Lipton, M., & Ravallion, M. (1995). Poverty and policy. In J. Behrman & T. N. Srinivasan (Eds.), Handbook of development economics (Vol. 3). Amsterdam: North-Holland.Google Scholar
  17. Maasoumi, E. (1986). The measurement and decomposition of multidimensional inequality. Econometrica, 54, 771–779.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Pradhan, M., & Ravallion, M. (2000). Measuring poverty using qualitative perceptions of consumption adequacy. Review of Economics and Statistics, 82(3), 462–471.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  19. Ravallion, M. (1996). Issues in measuring and modelling poverty. Economic Journal, 106, 1328–1343.Google Scholar
  20. Sen, A. K. (1976). Poverty: An ordinal approach to measurement. Econometrica, 44, 219–231.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Sen, A. K. (1985). Commodities and capabilities. Amsterdam: North-Holland.Google Scholar
  22. Sen, A. K. (1992). Inequality reexamined. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
  23. Streeten, P. (1981). First things first: Meeting basic human needs in developing countries. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
  24. Takayama, N. (1979). Poverty, income inequality and their measures: Professor Sen’s axiomatic approach reconsidered. Econometrica, 47, 747–759.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Tsui, K. Y. (1995). Multidimensional generalizations of the relative and absolute indices: The Atkinson–Kolm-Sen approach. Journal of Economic Theory, 67, 251–265.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Tsui, K. Y. (2002). Multidimensional poverty indices. Social Choice and Welfare, 19, 69–93.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. UNDP. (1990). Human development report. Oxford University Press, New York.Google Scholar
  28. Zheng, B. (1997). Aggregate poverty measures. Journal of Economic Surveys, 11, 123–162.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Paris School of EconomicsParisFrance
  2. 2.Indian Statistical InstituteKolkataIndia

Personalised recommendations