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Tracking Poverty Over Time in the Absence of Comparable Consumption Data

  • David Stifel
  • Luc Christiaensen

Following the endorsement by the international community of the Millennium Development Goals, there has been an increasing demand for practical methods for steadily tracking poverty. An economically intuitive and inexpensive methodology is explored for doing so in the absence of regular, comparable data on household consumption. The minimum data requirements for this methodology are the availability of a household budget survey and a series of surveys with a comparable set of asset data also contained in the budget survey. This method is illustrated using a series of Demographic and Health Surveys for Kenya. Copyright The Author 2007. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the International Bank for Reconstruction and Development / the world bank . All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail:, Oxford University Press.

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Article provided by World Bank Group in its journal The World Bank Economic Review.

Volume (Year): 21 (2007)
Issue (Month): 2 (June)
Pages: 317-341

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Handle: RePEc:oup:wbecrv:v:21:y:2007:i:2:p:317-341
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  1. Martin Ravallion, 2003. "Measuring Aggregate Welfare in Developing Countries: How Well Do National Accounts and Surveys Agree?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 85(3), pages 645-652, August.
  2. Luc J. Christiaensen & Kalanidhi Subbarao, 2005. "Towards an Understanding of Household Vulnerability in Rural Kenya," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 14(4), pages 520-558, December.
  3. Andrew Chesher & Christian Schluter, 2002. "Welfare Measurement and Measurement Error," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(2), pages 357-378.
  4. Sahn, David E. & Stifel, David C., 2000. "Poverty Comparisons Over Time and Across Countries in Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 28(12), pages 2123-2155, December.
  5. Angus Deaton & Salman Zaidi, 2002. "Guidelines for Constructing Consumption Aggregates for Welfare Analysis," World Bank Publications, The World Bank, number 14101, December.
  6. Quisumbing, Agnes R. & Haddad, Lawrence & Pena, Christine, 2001. "Are women overrepresented among the poor? An analysis of poverty in 10 developing countries," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 66(1), pages 225-269, October.
  7. Ravallion, Martin, 1996. "Issues in Measuring and Modelling Poverty," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 106(438), pages 1328-43, September.
  8. Andrew Chesher & Christian Schluter, 2002. "Welfare Measurement and Measurement Error," Review of Economic Studies, Oxford University Press, vol. 69(2), pages 357-378.
  9. Gaurav Datt & Martin Ravallion, 2002. "Is India's Economic Growth Leaving the Poor Behind?," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 16(3), pages 89-108, Summer.
  10. Angus Deaton, 2003. "Household Surveys, Consumption, and the Measurement of Poverty," Economic Systems Research, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(2), pages 135-159.
  11. Harold Alderman & Miriam Babita & Gabriel Demombynes & Nthabiseng Makhatha & Berk �zler, 2002. "How Low Can You Go? Combining Census and Survey Data for Mapping Poverty in South Africa," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 11(2), pages 169-200, June.
  12. Sahn, David E. & Stifel, David C., 2003. "Progress Toward the Millennium Development Goals in Africa," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 23-52, January.
  13. Chris Elbers & Jean O. Lanjouw & Peter Lanjouw, 2003. "Micro--Level Estimation of Poverty and Inequality," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 71(1), pages 355-364, January.
  14. Elbers, Chris & Lanjouw, Jean O. & Lanjouw, Peter, 2002. "Micro-level estimation of welfare," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2911, The World Bank.
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