Two Africas? Why Africa’s ‘Growth Miracle’ is barely reducing poverty
AbstractAbstract India has one of the highest underweight burdens in the world, with signs of rising obesity. Coexistence of underweight and overweight women is symptomatic of the double burden of malnutrition. The present study aims to throw new light on the double burden of malnutrition among Indian women in the age group 22-49 years. The analysis is based on a nationally representative household survey, InAlthough growth has improved substantially in most African countries in recent years, poverty across the continent has fallen very little in the aggregate, even though there have been outstanding performances by some countries. Indeed, some African countries have slipped back, and exhibit higher poverty rates than in 1990. This paper seeks to understand the reasons for this variance between countries; the reasons why, certainly if one uses headcount poverty data, there are ‘two Africas’, one with powerful ability to reduce poverty and one without. We argue that some of the reasons for this difference are rooted in colonial times, and those countries which developed dynamic exports of smallholder cash crops, the ‘peasant export economies’, received a headstart in relation to mineral- and large farm-based economies, because of the more equitable income distribution which labour-intensive, smallholder-based economies generate. However, in the post-colonial period, many peasant export economies wasted this headstart, and some mine/plantation economies were able to transcend the limitation of not having received one. The key reasons for this evolution, we argue, lie in the motivation and ability of African elites to form pro-poor coalitions, which in some cases were then able to implement tax and expenditure policies with the ability to bring a pro-poor pattern of growth into being. This story is tested both econometrically and by means of four contrasted country case studies.dia Human Development Survey, 2005. The results indicate that the factors underlying this burden include socio-economic status (SES), location, marital status, age, education, physical activity, media exposure, and dietary composition and frequency of eating. We find that there is a socio-economic patterning of underweight and overweight women, with a large concentration of underweight women among those with a low SES and of overweight women among high SES. Given that the health implications of being underweight and overweight are grim, it is imperative that there is a simultaneous increase in the focus on the health needs of overweight and obese people and on the needs of the large number of severely undernourished people in society. For Indian women, the glaring health/nutrition disparities are matched only by the grimness of their existence and survival prospects.
Download InfoIf you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by BWPI, The University of Manchester in its series Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series with number 19113.
Date of creation: 2013
Date of revision:
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
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.:
- Clemens Breisinger & Xinshen Diao & James Thurlow & Ramatu M. Al Hassan, 2011.
"Potential impacts of a green revolution in Africa—the case of Ghana,"
Journal of International Development,
John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 23(1), pages 82-102, January.
- Breisinger, Clemens & Diao, Xinshen & Thurlow, James & Al-Hassan, Ramatu M., 2009. "Potential Impacts of a Green Revolution in Africa – the Case of Ghana," 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China 51086, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
- Geeta Kingdon & John Knight, 2007.
"Unemployment in South Africa, 1995--2003: Causes, Problems and Policies,"
Journal of African Economies,
Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 16(5), pages 813-848, November.
- Geeta Kingdon & John Knight, 2005. "Unemployment in South Africa, 1995-2003: Causes, Problems and Policies," Economics Series Working Papers GPRG-WPS-010, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Edmund Amann & David Lawson, 2013. "International Crises And Developing Economies: Linkages And Recent Experiences," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 25(8), pages 1035-1049, November.
- Murray Leibbrandt & Ingrid Woolard & Arden Finn & Jonathan Argent, 2010. "Trends in South African Income Distribution and Poverty since the Fall of Apartheid," OECD Social, Employment and Migration Working Papers 101, OECD Publishing.
- Lawson, David & McKay, Andrew & Okidi, John A., 2004.
"Poverty Persistence and Transitions in Uganda: A Combined Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis,"
Development Economics and Public Policy Working Papers
30555, University of Manchester, Institute for Development Policy and Management (IDPM).
- David Lawson & Andy Mckay & John Okidi, 2006. "Poverty persistence and transitions in Uganda: A combined qualitative and quantitative analysis," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(7), pages 1225-1251.
- David Lawson, 2005. "Poverty Persistence and Transitions in Uganda: A Combined Qualitative and Quantitative Analysis," Economics Series Working Papers GPRG-WPS-004, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Mogues, Tewodaj & Morris, Michael & Freinkman, Lev & Adubi, Abimbola & Simeon, Ehui & Nwoko, Chinedum & Taiwo, Olufemi & Nege, Caroline & Okonji, Patrick & Chete, Louis, 2008. "Agricultural public spending in Nigeria:," IFPRI discussion papers 789, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
- Mosley, Paul, 2012. "The Politics of Poverty Reduction," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199692125, September.
- Abigail Barr & Marcel Fafchamps, 2004.
"A client-community assessment of the NGO sector in Uganda,"
CSAE Working Paper Series
2004-23, Centre for the Study of African Economies, University of Oxford.
- Abigail Barr & Marcel Fafchamps, 2006. "A client-community assessment of the NGO sector in Uganda," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 42(4), pages 611-639.
- Abigail Barr & Marcel Fafchamps, 2004. "A Client-Community Assessment of the NGO Sector in Uganda," Development and Comp Systems 0409069, EconWPA.
- Abigail Barr & Marcel Fafchamps, 2004. "A Client-Community Assessment of the NGO Sector in Uganda," Economics Series Working Papers WPS/2004-23, University of Oxford, Department of Economics.
- Kosack, Stephen, 2012. "The Education of Nations: How the Political Organization of the Poor, Not Democracy, Led Governments to Invest in Mass Education," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199841677, September.
- Valente, Christine, 2009. "The Food (In)Security Impact of Land Redistribution in South Africa: Microeconometric Evidence from National Data," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 37(9), pages 1540-1553, September.
- Servaas van der Berg, 2007. "Apartheid's Enduring Legacy: Inequalities in Education-super- 1," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 16(5), pages 849-880, November.
- Sue Bowden & Blessing Chiripanhura & Paul Mosley, 2008. "Measuring and explaining poverty in six African countries: A long-period approach," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 20(8), pages 1049-1079.
- Andy McKay, 2013. "Growth and Poverty Reduction in Africa in the Last Two Decades: Evidence from an AERC Growth-Poverty Project and Beyond," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 22(suppl_1), pages -i76, January.
- Jorge Agüero & Michael R. Carter & Julian May, 2007. "Poverty and Inequality in the First Decade of South Africa's Democracy: What can be Learnt from Panel Data from KwaZulu-Natal?," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 16(5), pages 782-812, November.
- Morten Jerven, 2013. "Comparability of GDP estimates in Sub-Saharan Africa: The effect of Revisions in Sources and Methods Since Structural Adjustment," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 59, pages S16-S36, October.
- Christian Morrisson, 1996. "The Political Feasibility of Adjustment," OECD Development Centre Policy Briefs 13, OECD Publishing.
- Paul Mosley & John Hudson & Arjan Verschoor, 2004. "Aid, Poverty Reduction and the 'New Conditionality'," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 114(496), pages F217-F243, 06.
- Shantayanan Devarajan, 2013. "Africa's Statistical Tragedy," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 59, pages S9-S15, October.
- Guichaoua, Yvan, 2010. "How Do Ethnic Militias Perpetuate in Nigeria? A Micro-level Perspective on the Oodua People's Congress," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(11), pages 1657-1666, November.
- Kenneth Harttgen & Stephan Klasen & Sebastian Vollmer, 2013.
"An African Growth Miracle? Or: What do Asset Indices Tell Us About Trends in Economic Performance?,"
Review of Income and Wealth,
International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 59, pages S37-S61, October.
- Kenneth Harttgen & Stephan Klasen & Sebastian Vollmer, 2012. "An African Growth Miracle? Or: What do Asset Indices Tell Us about Trends in Economic Performance?," Courant Research Centre: Poverty, Equity and Growth - Discussion Papers 109, Courant Research Centre PEG.
- Xavier Sala-i-Martin & Maxim Pinkovskiy, 2010. "African Poverty is Falling...Much Faster than You Think!," NBER Working Papers 15775, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
- Arne Bigsten & Abebe Shimeles, 2007. "Can Africa Reduce Poverty by Half by 2015?," Development Policy Review, Overseas Development Institute, vol. 25(2), pages 147-166, 03.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Rowena Harding).
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.