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Inter-regional Poverty Comparisons: Case of West Bengal


  • Somnath Chattopadhyay

    () (Economic Research Unit, Indian Statistical Institute, 203 B. T. Road, Kolkata 700108, India)


This paper aims to explore into the causes of the differential levels of economic well being in the two parts of West Bengal, an eastern state of India in terms of incidences of poverty and various socio economic explanatory variables. Using a regression based technique, the incidences of poverty are found separately for these two parts, i.e., North Bengal and South Bengal. The disparity in poverty estimates (in particular, the Head Count Ratio (HCR) between rural North and South Bengal is studied. The difference between the poverty estimates is then decomposed into a characteristics effect, showing the effect of the regional characteristics and a coefficients effect, showing the effects of the differential impact of the characteristics over the regions using the familiar Oaxaca decomposition method and the results are interpreted in terms of policy prescriptions.

Suggested Citation

  • Somnath Chattopadhyay, 2011. "Inter-regional Poverty Comparisons: Case of West Bengal," Journal of Quantitative Economics, The Indian Econometric Society, vol. 9(2), pages 104-122, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:jqe:jqenew:v:9:y:2011:i:2:p:104-122

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Gang, Ira N. & Sen, Kunal & Yun, Myeong-Su, 2002. "Caste, Ethnicity and Poverty in Rural India," IZA Discussion Papers 629, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    2. Oaxaca, Ronald, 1973. "Male-Female Wage Differentials in Urban Labor Markets," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 14(3), pages 693-709, October.
    3. Sumon Kumar Bhaumik & Ira N. Gang & Myeong-Su Yun, 2006. "A Note on Decomposing Differences in Poverty Incidence Using Regression Estimates: Algorithm and Example," Departmental Working Papers 200633, Rutgers University, Department of Economics.
    4. S. Mahendra Dev, 2008. "India," Chapters,in: Handbook on the South Asian Economies, chapter 1 Edward Elgar Publishing.
    5. Geda, A. & de Jong, N. & Mwabu, G. & Kimenyi, M.S., 2001. "Determinants of poverty in Kenya : a household level analysis," ISS Working Papers - General Series 19095, International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (ISS), The Hague.
    6. Bigman, David & Srinivasan, P. V., 2002. "Geographical targeting of poverty alleviation programs: methodology and applications in rural India," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 24(3), pages 237-255, June.
    7. Yun, Myeong-Su, 2004. "Decomposing differences in the first moment," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 275-280, February.
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    Cited by:

    1. Gadom DJAL-GADOM & Armand MBOUTCHOUANG KOUNTCHOU, 2016. "Cross-County Poverty Comparisons In Chad: The Impact Of The Oil Revenues Redistribution Policy," Region et Developpement, Region et Developpement, LEAD, Universite du Sud - Toulon Var, vol. 44, pages 61-78.
    2. Somnath Chattopadhyay & Amita Majumder & Hasanur Jaman, 2014. "Decomposition of inter-regional poverty gap in India: a spatial approach," Empirical Economics, Springer, vol. 46(1), pages 65-99, February.
    3. Somnath Chattopadhyay, 2011. "Earnings efficiency and poverty dominance analysis: a spatial approach," Economics Bulletin, AccessEcon, vol. 31(3), pages 2298-2318.

    More about this item


    Poverty Incidence; Oaxaca Decomposition; Delta;

    JEL classification:

    • C20 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - General
    • I30 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General


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