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Empirical issues in lifetime poverty measurement

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Author Info

  • Michael Hoy

    ()

  • Brennan Thompson
  • Buhong Zheng

Abstract

This paper demonstrates the implications of adopting an approach to measuring poverty that takes into account the lifetime experience of individuals rather than simply taking a static or cross-sectional perspective. Our approach follows the theoretical innovations in Hoy and Zheng (2008) which address various aspects of the specific pattern of any poverty spells experienced by an individual as well as a possible retrospective consideration that an individual might have concerning his life experience as a whole. For an individual, our perspective of lifetime poverty is influenced by both the snapshot poverty of each period and the poverty level of the permanent lifetime consumption; it is also influenced by how poverty spells are distributed over the lifetime. Using PSID data for the US, we demonstrate empirically the power of alternative axioms concerning how lifetime poverty should be measured when making pairwise comparisons of individual lifetime profiles of consumption (income) experiences. We also demonstrate the importance of taking a lifetime view of poverty in comparing poverty between groups by use of the classic FGT ‘snapshot’ poverty index in conjunction with period weighting functions that explicitly reflect concerns about the pattern of poverty spells over individuals’ lifetimes.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1007/s10888-011-9192-1
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal The Journal of Economic Inequality.

Volume (Year): 10 (2012)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 163-189

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Handle: RePEc:kap:jecinq:v:10:y:2012:i:2:p:163-189

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Web page: http://springerlink.metapress.com/link.asp?id=111137

Related research

Keywords: Lifetime poverty; Snapshot poverty; Chronic poverty; Early poverty; Poverty measurement; I32;

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References

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  1. James E. Foster, 2007. "A Class of Chronic Poverty Measures," Vanderbilt University Department of Economics Working Papers 0701, Vanderbilt University Department of Economics.
  2. Cesar Calvo & Stefan Dercon, 2007. "Chronic Poverty and All That: The Measurement of Poverty over Time," CSAE Working Paper Series 2007-04, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
  3. Hoy, Michael & Zheng, Buhong, 2011. "Measuring lifetime poverty," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 146(6), pages 2544-2562.
  4. David Clark & David Hulme, 2010. "Poverty, time and vagueness: integrating the core poverty and chronic poverty frameworks," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 34(2), pages 347-366, March.
  5. Jyotsna Jalan & Martin Ravallion, 2000. "Is transient poverty different? Evidence for rural China," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 36(6), pages 82-99.
  6. Zheng, Buhong, 1997. " Aggregate Poverty Measures," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 11(2), pages 123-62, June.
  7. Atkinson, Anthony B., 1970. "On the measurement of inequality," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 2(3), pages 244-263, September.
  8. Zheng, Buhong, 2000. " Poverty Orderings," Journal of Economic Surveys, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 14(4), pages 427-66, September.
  9. Joan R. Rodgers & John L. Rodgers, 1993. "Chronic Poverty in the United States," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 28(1), pages 25-54.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Florent Bresson & Jean-Yves Duclos, 2012. "Intertemporal Poverty Comparisons," Cahiers de recherche 1240, CIRPEE.
  2. BOSSERT, Walter & CERIANI, Lidia & CHAKRAVARTY, Satya R. & D'AMBROSIO, Conchita, 2012. "Intertemporal Material Deprivation," Cahiers de recherche 2012-06, Universite de Montreal, Departement de sciences economiques.

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