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(Re)Counting the Poor in Peru: A Multidimensional Approach


  • Juan F. Castro
  • Jessica Baca
  • Juan P. Ocampo


Peruvian monetary poverty declined by 12 percentage points in only four years. Based on the Alkire-Foster multidimensional headcount, we build a simple comparative framework to measure the tension between this result and a broader indicator of deprivation. We select six dimensions and apply this framework to Peruvian data for 2004 and 2008. The results indicate that if we rely only on monetary standards, there is an increased risk of classifying as non-poor individuals who still suffer significant deprivation. Deprivations are similar across regions and are largely related to the lack of adequate water and sanitation services. This last result reveals an opportunity to focalize public investment efforts.

Suggested Citation

  • Juan F. Castro & Jessica Baca & Juan P. Ocampo, 2012. "(Re)Counting the Poor in Peru: A Multidimensional Approach," Latin American Journal of Economics-formerly Cuadernos de Economía, Instituto de Economía. Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile., vol. 49(1), pages 37-65, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:ioe:cuadec:v:49:y:2012:i:1:p:37-65

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Atkinson, A B, 1987. "On the Measurement of Poverty," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 55(4), pages 749-764, July.
    2. Foster, James & Greer, Joel & Thorbecke, Erik, 1984. "A Class of Decomposable Poverty Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 52(3), pages 761-766, May.
    3. Alkire, Sabina & Foster, James, 2011. "Counting and multidimensional poverty measurement," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 95(7-8), pages 476-487, August.
    4. Chakravarty, Satya R., 1983. "A new index of poverty," Mathematical Social Sciences, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 307-313, December.
    5. Diego Battiston & Guillermo Cruces & Luis Lopez-Calva & Maria Lugo & Maria Santos, 2013. "Income and Beyond: Multidimensional Poverty in Six Latin American Countries," Social Indicators Research: An International and Interdisciplinary Journal for Quality-of-Life Measurement, Springer, vol. 112(2), pages 291-314, June.
    6. Escobal, J. & Ponce, C., 2008. "Dinámicas Provinciales de Pobreza en el Perú 1993 - 2005," Working papers 011, Rimisp Latin American Center for Rural Development.
    7. Gustavo Yamada & Juan Francisco Castro, 2007. "Poverty, inequality, and social policies in Peru: As poor as it gets," Working Papers 07-06, Centro de Investigación, Universidad del Pacífico.
    8. Arie Kapteyn & Sara van de Geer & Huib van de Stadt, 1985. "The Impact of Changes in Income and Family Composition on Subjective Measures of Well-Being," NBER Chapters,in: Horizontal Equity, Uncertainty, and Economic Well-Being, pages 35-68 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    9. Sen, Amartya K, 1976. "Poverty: An Ordinal Approach to Measurement," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 44(2), pages 219-231, March.
    10. Juan F. Castro, 2006. "Política fiscal y gasto social en el Perú: Cuánto se ha avanzado y qué más se puede hacer para reducir la vulnerabilidad de los hogares," Working Papers 06-05, Centro de Investigación, Universidad del Pacífico.
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    Cited by:

    1. Enrique Vásquez Huamán, 2012. "El Perú de los pobres no visibles para el Estado: la inclusión social pendiente a julio del 2012," Working Papers 12-04, Centro de Investigación, Universidad del Pacífico.
    2. Kechagia, Polyxeni & Metaxas, Theodore, 2016. "FDI in Latin America: The case of Peru," MPRA Paper 72399, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    3. repec:eee:wodepe:v:7-8:y:2017:i::p:43-60 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Metaxas, Theodore & Kechagia, Polyxeni, 2015. "FDI in Peru and Uzbekistan: A comparative analysis in brief," MPRA Paper 63849, University Library of Munich, Germany.

    More about this item


    Multidimensional poverty; monetary poverty; Peru;

    JEL classification:

    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • O1 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development


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