Wednesday, May 21, 2008

[EQ] Counting and Multidimensional Poverty

Working Paper 7: Counting and Multidimensional Poverty

 

Sabina Alkire and James Foster
Oxford Poverty & Human Development Initiative -  Revised May 2008
Department of International Development - Queen Elizabeth House, University of Oxford

 

This working paper proposes a new methodology for multidimensional poverty measurement consisting of:
 (i)  an identification method that extends the traditional intersection and union approaches, and
 (ii) a class of poverty measures that satisfies a range of desirable properties including decomposability.

 

Available online as PDF file [42p.] at:

http://www.ophi.org.uk/pubs/Alkire_Foster_CountingMultidimensionalPoverty.pdf

 

“….MULTIDIMENSIONAL POVERTY has captured the attention of researchers and policymakers alike due, in part, to the compelling conceptual writings of Amartya Sen and the unprecedented availability of relevant data. A key direction for research has been the development of a coherent framework for measuring poverty in the multidimensional environment that is analogous to the set of techniques developed in unidimensional space.

 

Much attention has been paid to the aggregation step in poverty measurement through which the data are combined into an overall indicator of multidimensional

poverty. The major contributions have developed an array of multidimensional poverty measures and clarified the axioms they satisfy, primarily by extending well-established unidimensional poverty measures and axioms in new and interesting ways. 5 However each of the aggregation techniques relies on a prior identification step – namely, ‘who is poor?’ Considerably less attention has been given to this important component of a poverty methodology….”

 

Table of Contents

1. INTRODUCTION

2. UNIDIMENSIONAL MEASUREMENT

3. NOTATION

4. IDENTIFYING THE POOR

5. MEASURING POVERTY

6. PROPERTIES

7. THE ORDINAL CASE

7.1 Poverty as Unfreedom

7.2 Ordinal and Cardinal Data

8. GENERAL WEIGHTS

9. ILLUSTRATIVE EXAMPLES

10. CONCLUDING REMARKS

 

 

*      *      *     *

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[EQ] Nutrition in India: Facts and Interpretations

Nutrition in India: Facts and Interpretations

 

Angus Deaton, Research Program in Development Studies, Center for Health and Wellbeing, Princeton University

Jean Dr├Ęze, Department of Economics, Allahabad University

April 2008

 

Available online as PDF file [80p.] at: http://weblamp.princeton.edu/chw/papers/deaton_dreze_india_nutrition.pdf

 

“……In spite of India’s rapid economic growth, there has been a sustained decline in per capita calorie consumption during the last twenty-five years. While the decline has been largest among better-off households, it has taken place throughout the range of household per capita total expenditure. For both adults and children, anthropometric indicators of nutritional status in India are among the worst in the world.

 

While these indicators have shown improvement over time, the rate of progress is slow relative to what might be expected based on international and historical experience. This paper presents the basic facts about growth, poverty and nutrition in India, it points to a number of puzzles, and it sketches a preliminary story that is consistent with the evidence.

 

The reduction in calorie consumption cannot be attributed to declining real incomes, nor to any increase in the relative price of food. Our leading hypothesis, on which much work remains to be done, is that, as real incomes and wages have increased, leading to some nutritional improvement, there has been an offsetting reduction in calorie requirements due to declining levels of physical activity and possibly also to various improvements in the health environment. If correct, this analysis does not imply that Indians are currently adequately nourished; nothing could be further from the truth. Calorie intake has serious limitations as a nutritional intake; while calories are extremely important, there are too many sources of variation in calorie requirements for standard, invariant, calorie-norms to be usefully applied to large sections of the population. We conclude with a plea for better, and more regular, monitoring of nutritional status in India…”

 

CONTENTS

1. Introduction

2. Trends in calorie consumption and nutrition indicators

2.1. Calories, food, and expenditures

Food, calories and cereal calories

Expenditure, poverty, and distribution

Calorie deficiencies and reported hunger

On calorie Engel curves

Total calories and cereal calories

Calorie Engel curves for rich and poor

Price paid per calorie

Spatial patterns of calorie and fat consumption

Is the decline in calories real: other evidence?

2.2. Trends in nutritional status

Anthropometric measurement

Nutrition status of Indian children

Recent trends in child nutrition

Adult weights and heights

3. Interpretations

3.1. The calorie decline

Food prices

Coarse cereal prices

Impoverishment?

Sen’s argument

Are the calorie Engel curves misleading?

Changes in food habits and non-market entitlements

Declining needs for calories?

Engel Curves reexamined

3.2. Nutritional status

Farewell to calorie-based nutrition assessment?

Multiple deficiencies of Indian diets

Nutrition status of privileged Indian children

4. Concluding remarks

 

 

 *      *      *     * 

This message from the Pan American Health Organization, PAHO/WHO, is part of an effort to disseminate
information Related to: Equity; Health inequality; Socioeconomic inequality in health; Socioeconomic
health differentials; Gender; Violence; Poverty; Health Economics; Health Legislation; Ethnicity; Ethics;
Information Technology - Virtual libraries; Research & Science issues.  [DD/ KMS Area] 

“Materials provided in this electronic list are provided "as is".Unless expressly stated otherwise, the findings
and interpretations included in the Materials are those of the authors and not necessarily of The Pan American
Health Organization PAHO/WHO or its country members”.

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EQUITY List - Archives - Join/remove: http://listserv.paho.org/Archives/equidad.html

 

 

    IMPORTANT: This transmission is for use by the intended recipient and it may contain privileged, proprietary or confidential information. If you are not the intended recipient or a person responsible for delivering this transmission to the intended recipient, you may not disclose, copy or distribute this transmission or take any action in reliance on it. If you received this transmission in error, please notify us immediately by email to infosec@paho.org, and please dispose of and delete this transmission. Thank you.