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Child poverty in Vietnam: using adult equivalence scales to estimate income-poverty for different age groups

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  • White, Howard
  • Masset, Edoardo

Abstract

Measurements of child poverty are commonly carried out using household expenditure data in per capita terms or adjusted by some standard parameter of economies of size. In this paper, we use adult equivalence scales and economies of scale coefficients estimated from the data to assess child poverty in Vietnam. By doing so, we show child poverty in Vietnam to be overestimated by conventional techniques. The commonly used technique for the estimation of adult equivalence scales contains an implicit household income distribution. Therefore, we used these techniques to estimate child poverty and patterns of resource allocation for different household groups. Better-off families (which are largely urban, more educated, female-headed and from the Khin ethnic majority) spend a lower share of their income on children than other household groups, though their children are still better off in absolute terms. A comparison of the data between 1992-93 and 1997-98 also reveals that children from better-off family groups have experienced a more rapid increase in welfare levels than children from other sectors of Vietnamese society during this period. The presence of gender discrimination in child treatment is also investigated. Rural and male headed households are those that more prominently appear as discriminating against female children. We found no clear relationship between gender discrimination and expenditure or between gender discrimination and level of education.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 777.

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Date of creation: 2002
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Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:777

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Keywords: child poverty; poverty measurement; Vietnam;

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References

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  1. Sonia Bhalotra & Cliff Attfield, 1998. "Intrahousehold resource allocation in rural Pakistan: a semiparametric analysis," Journal of Applied Econometrics, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 13(5), pages 463-480.
  2. Van Praag, Bernard M.S. & Warnaar, Marcel F., 1993. "The cost of children and the use of demographic variables in consumer demand," Handbook of Population and Family Economics, in: M. R. Rosenzweig & Stark, O. (ed.), Handbook of Population and Family Economics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 6, pages 241-273 Elsevier.
  3. Deaton, Angus S & Muellbauer, John, 1986. "On Measuring Child Costs: With Applications to Poor Countries," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 94(4), pages 720-44, August.
  4. Lancaster, Geoffrey & Ray, Ranjan & Valenzuela, Maria Rebecca, 1999. "A Cross-Country Study of Equivalence Scales and Expenditure Inequality on Unit Record Household Budget Data," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 45(4), pages 455-82, December.
  5. Shelley A. Phipps, 1998. "What Is The Income "Cost Of A Child"? Exact Equivalence Scales For Canadian Two-Parent Families," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(1), pages 157-164, February.
  6. Lancaster, Geoffrey & Ray, Ranjan, 1998. "Comparison of Alternative Models of Household Equivalence Scales: The Australian Evidence on Unit Record Data," The Economic Record, The Economic Society of Australia, vol. 74(224), pages 1-14, March.
  7. J. L. Nicholson, 1976. "Appraisal Of Different Methods Of Estimating Equivalence Scales And Their Results," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 22(1), pages 1-11, 03.
  8. Nelson, Julie A, 1993. "Household Equivalence Scales: Theory versus Policy?," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 11(3), pages 471-93, July.
  9. Muellbauer, John, 1977. "Testing the Barten Model of Household Composition Effects and the Cost of Children," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 87(347), pages 460-87, September.
  10. Ferreira, M Luisa & Buse, Reuben C & Chavas, Jean-Paul, 1998. "Is There Bias in Computing Household Equivalence Scales?," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 44(2), pages 183-98, June.
  11. Pollak, Robert A & Wales, Terence J, 1979. "Welfare Comparisons and Equivalence Scales," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 69(2), pages 216-21, May.
  12. Gronau, Reuben, 1991. "The Intrafamily Allocation of Goods--How to Separate the Adult from the Child," Journal of Labor Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 9(3), pages 207-35, July.
  13. Deaton, Angus S & Ruiz-Castillo, Javier & Thomas, Duncan, 1989. "The Influence of Household Composition on Household Expenditure Patterns: Theory and Spanish Evidence," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 97(1), pages 179-200, February.
  14. Haughton, Dominique & Haughton, Jonathan, 1997. "Explaining Child Nutrition in Vietnam," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(3), pages 541-56, April.
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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Roelen, Keetie & Gassmann, Franziska, 2008. "Measuring Child Poverty and Well-Being: a literature review," MPRA Paper 8981, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Ngo, Thu Hien Laura & Santos, Paulo, 2012. "Geography and economic growth in Vietnam," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126491, International Association of Agricultural Economists.
  3. Bruno Arpino & Arnstein Aassve, 2008. "Estimating the causal effect of fertility on economic wellbeing: Data requirements, identifying assumptions and estimation methods," Working Papers 013, "Carlo F. Dondena" Centre for Research on Social Dynamics (DONDENA), Università Commerciale Luigi Bocconi.
  4. Molini, Vasco & Nubé, Maarten & van den Boom, Bart, 2010. "Adult BMI as a Health and Nutritional Inequality Measure: Applications at Macro and Micro Levels," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 38(7), pages 1012-1023, July.
  5. Siddiqui, Rizwana, 2004. "Modelling gender dimensions of the impact of economic reforms on time allocation among market, household, and leisure activities in Pakistan," MPRA Paper 4197, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Dec 2005.
  6. Ngo, Thu Hien Laura & Santos, Paulo, 2012. "Geography and economic growth in Vietnam," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 126489, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
  7. Rizwana Siddiqui, 2004. "Modelling Gender Dimensions of the Impact of Economic Reforms on Time Allocation among Market Work,Household Work, and Leisure," PIDE-Working Papers 2004:185, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics.
  8. Monica Guillen-Royo, 2008. "Consumption and Subjective Wellbeing: Exploring Basic Needs, Social Comparison, Social Integration and Hedonism in Peru," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 89(3), pages 535-555, December.
  9. Judith Streak & Derek Yu & Servaas Van der Berg, 2009. "Measuring Child Poverty in South Africa: Sensitivity to the Choice of Equivalence Scale and an Updated Profile," Social Indicators Research, Springer, vol. 94(2), pages 183-201, November.
  10. Patrick Eozenou, 2009. "Optimal Risk Sharing Under Limited Commitment: Evidence From Rural Vietnam," Working Papers 06, Development and Policies Research Center (DEPOCEN), Vietnam.
  11. Nguyen Viet, Cuong, 2010. "Ethnic minority children’s access to public services in Vietnam," MPRA Paper 33611, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  12. Aassve, Arnstein & Arpino, Bruno, 2008. "Estimation of causal effects of fertility on economic wellbeing: evidence from rural Vietnam," ISER Working Paper Series 2007-27, Institute for Social and Economic Research.
  13. World Bank, 2008. "How do Women Fare in Education, Employment, and Health? A Gender Analysis of the 2006 Vietnam Household Living Standard Survey," World Bank Other Operational Studies 7737, The World Bank.
  14. Rizwana Siddiqui, 2007. "Modelling Gender Dimensions of the Impact of Economic Reforms in Pakistan," Working Papers MPIA 2007-13, PEP-MPIA.
  15. McCulloch, Neil & Calandrino, Michele, 2003. "Vulnerability and Chronic Poverty in Rural Sichuan," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 611-628, March.
  16. Baulch, Bob & Masset, Edoardo, 2003. "Do Monetary and Nonmonetary Indicators Tell the Same Story About Chronic Poverty? A Study of Vietnam in the 1990s," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(3), pages 441-453, March.

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