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Is Poverty Increasing in the Developing World?

  • Chen, Shaohua
  • Datt, Gaurav
  • Ravallion, Martin

We assess the developing world's progress in reducing poverty during the late 1980s using new data on the distribution of household consumption or income per person for 44 countries. Local currencies are adjusted to purchasing power parity. To assess robustness, restricted dominance tests are applied to the poverty comparisons. An overall decrease in poverty incidence is indicated over a wide range of poverty lines and measures. However the change is small, and numbers of poor increased at roughly the rate of population growth. The experience was diverse across regions and countries; poverty fell in South and East Asia, while it rose in Latin America and sub-Saharan Africa. Copyright 1994 by The International Association for Research in Income and Wealth.

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Article provided by International Association for Research in Income and Wealth in its journal Review of Income & Wealth.

Volume (Year): 40 (1994)
Issue (Month): 4 (December)
Pages: 359-76

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Handle: RePEc:bla:revinw:v:40:y:1994:i:4:p:359-76
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  1. Lipton, Michael & Ravallion, Martin, 1993. "Poverty and policy," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1130, The World Bank.
  2. Ravallion, Martin & Bidani, Benu, 1993. "How robust is a poverty profile?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1223, The World Bank.
  3. Berry, Albert & Bourguignon, Francois & Morrisson, Christian, 1983. "The Level of World Inequality: How Much Can One Say?," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 29(3), pages 217-41, September.
  4. Anand, Sudhir & Kanbur, S. M. R., 1993. "The Kuznets process and the inequality--development relationship," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(1), pages 25-52, February.
  5. Ravallion, Martin & Datt, Gaurav & van de Walle, Dominique, 1991. "Quantifying Absolute Poverty in the Developing World," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 37(4), pages 345-61, December.
  6. Datt, Gaurav & Ravallion, Martin, 1992. "Growth and redistribution components of changes in poverty measures : A decomposition with applications to Brazil and India in the 1980s," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 275-295, April.
  7. Stern, Nicholas, 1989. "The Economics of Development: A Survey," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 99(397), pages 597-685, September.
  8. Summers, Robert & Heston, Alan, 1988. "A New Set of International Comparisons of Real Product and Price Levels Estimates for 130 Countries, 1950-1985," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 34(1), pages 1-25, March.
  9. Datt, Gaurav, 1998. "Computational tools for poverty measurement and analysis," FCND discussion papers 50, International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).
  10. Fields, Gary S, 1989. "Changes in Poverty and Inequality in Developing Countries," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 4(2), pages 167-85, July.
  11. Atkinson, A B, 1987. "On the Measurement of Poverty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(4), pages 749-64, July.
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