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Poverty in Guatemala

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  • World Bank
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    Abstract

    Poverty in Guatemala is high and deep. In 2000, over half of all Guatemalans lived in poverty. About 16 percent lived in extreme poverty. Available evidence suggests that poverty in Guatemala is higher than in other Central American countries. Although poverty has fallen over the past decade, its trend recently declined due to a series of economic shocks during 2001 and 2002. The drop of poverty incidence since 1990 is slightly slower than what would have been predicted given Guatemala's growth rates, suggesting that growth has not been particularly pro-poor. This pattern arises largely because growth in the rural sectors-where the poor are largely concentrated-has been slower than in other areas. Poverty and vulnerability are mainly chronic whereas only a fifth were transient poor. Likewise, while 64 percent of the population could be considered vulnerable to poverty, the majority of these are vulnerable due to low overall expected consumption rather than high volatility of consumption. The chronic nature of poverty and vulnerability highlights the importance of building the assets of the poor, rather than focusing primarily on the expansion of public safety nets or social insurance. Nonetheless, some public transfers (social assistance) could indeed be desirable to alleviate the poverty and suffering of the extreme poor, particularly when linked to participation in health and education activities. The Peace Accords represented a turning point for Guatemala's development path, paving the way for a transformation to a more prosperous and inclusive nation. Key areas related to economic development and poverty reduction include: a focus on human development, productive and sustainable development, modernization of the democratic state, and strengthening and promoting participation. The rights of the indigenous and women were also highlighted as cross-cutting themes throughout the accords, in an attempt to reverse the historical exclusion of these groups.

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    Bibliographic Info

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    This book is provided by The World Bank in its series World Bank Publications with number 15066 and published in 2004.

    ISBN: 0-8213-5552-X
    Handle: RePEc:wbk:wbpubs:15066

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    Related research

    Keywords: Poverty Reduction - Achieving Shared Growth Health Monitoring and Evaluation Health Economics and Finance Services and Transfers to Poor Poverty Reduction - Poverty Assessment;

    References

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    Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
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    1. Psacharopoulos, George, 1993. "Returns to investment in education : a global update," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1067, The World Bank.
    2. Narayan, Deepa & Pritchett, Lant, 1997. "Cents and sociability : household income and social capital in rural Tanzania," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1796, The World Bank.
    3. Hentschel, Jesko, et al, 2000. "Combining Census and Survey Data to Trace the Spatial Dimensions of Poverty: A Case Study of Ecuador," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 14(1), pages 147-65, January.
    4. Psacharopoulos, George & Ying Chu Ng, 1992. "Earnings and education in Latin America : assessing priorities for schooling investments," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1056, The World Bank.
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    Cited by:
    1. World Bank, 2004. "Drivers of Sustainable Rural Growth and Poverty Reduction in Central America : Guatemala Case Study, Volume 2. Background Papers and Technical Appendices," World Bank Other Operational Studies 14559, The World Bank.
    2. Adams Jr., Richard H. & Cuecuecha, Alfredo, 2010. "Remittances, Household Expenditure and Investment in Guatemala," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(11), pages 1626-1641, November.
    3. Alwang, Jeffrey & Jansen, Hans G.P. & Siegel, Paul B. & Pichon, Francisco, 2006. "El espacio geográfico, los activos, los medios de vida y el bienstar en las zonas rurales de CentroAmérica: evidencia emp�rica de Guatemala, Honduras y Nicaragua," DSGD discussion papers 26SP, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    4. Adams, Richard H. Jr., 2004. "Remittances and poverty in Guatemala," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3418, The World Bank.
    5. Alwang, Jeffrey & Jansen, Hans G.P. & Siegel, Paul B. & Pichon, Francisco, 2005. "Geographic space, assets, livelihoods and well-being in rural Central America," DSGD discussion papers 26, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
    6. Macours, Karen, 2014. "Ethnic divisions, contract choice, and search costs in the Guatemalan land rental market," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 1-18.
    7. Marshall, Jeffery H., 2009. "School quality and learning gains in rural Guatemala," Economics of Education Review, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 207-216, April.
    8. Pagiola, Stefano & Zhang, Wei & Colom, Ale, 2009. "Can payments for watershed services help save biodiversity? A spatial analysis of highland Guatemala," MPRA Paper 13728, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Curtis Holder & Gregory Chase, 2012. "The role of remittances and decentralization of forest management in the sustainability of a municipal-communal pine forest in eastern Guatemala," Environment, Development and Sustainability, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 25-43, February.

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