Geographic inequity in a decentralized anti-poverty program : a case study of China
AbstractThe central governments of many developing countries have chosen to decentralize their anti-poverty programs, in the expectation that local agents are better informed about local needs. The paper shows that this potential advantage of decentralized eligibility criteria can come at a large cost, to the extent that the induced geographic inequities undermine performance in reaching the income- poor nationally. These issues are studied empirically for (probably) the largest transfer-based poverty program in the world, namely China's Di Bao program,which aims to assure a minimum income through means-tested transfers. Poor municipalities are found to adopt systematically lower eligibility thresholds, reducing the program's ability to reach poor areas, and generating considerable horizontal inequity.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by The World Bank in its series Policy Research Working Paper Series with number 4303.
Date of creation: 01 Aug 2007
Date of revision:
Inequality; Services&Transfers to Poor; Poverty Monitoring&Analysis; Economic Theory&Research;
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2007-08-14 (All new papers)
- NEP-CNA-2007-08-14 (China)
- NEP-DEV-2007-08-14 (Development)
- NEP-LTV-2007-08-14 (Unemployment, Inequality & Poverty)
- NEP-PPM-2007-08-14 (Project, Program & Portfolio Management)
- NEP-TRA-2007-08-14 (Transition Economics)
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- Robert T. Jensen & Nolan H. Miller, 2010. "Do Consumer Price Subsidies Really Improve Nutrition?," NBER Working Papers 16102, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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