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Poverty in Russia during the Transition: An Overview

  • Klugman, Jeni
  • Braithwaite, Jeanine

It is no surprise that the breakup of the Soviet Union and the overall demise of the planned economy has had a profound effect on the welfare of the Russian people. But the absence of reliable survey data has constrained our understanding of the impact that transition has had on the distribution of income. This article draws upon several rounds of a nationally representative household survey to document the sharp increases in the incidence and severity of poverty that have occurred during the transition. We investigate the routes by which macroeconomic and structural developments have been transmitted through the labor market and examine the performance of an increasingly overburdened, unfocused, and inadequate system of social protection. There is no evidence to suggest that the poor have shared in Russia's emerging economic recovery, and the emergence of a core group of long-term poor appears to be a distinct possibility. Copyright 1998 by Oxford University Press.

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Article provided by World Bank Group in its journal World Bank Research Observer.

Volume (Year): 13 (1998)
Issue (Month): 1 (February)
Pages: 37-58

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Handle: RePEc:oup:wbrobs:v:13:y:1998:i:1:p:37-58
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  1. Ravallion, M., 1992. "Poverty Comparisons - A Guide to Concepts and Methods," Papers 88, World Bank - Living Standards Measurement.
  2. Evgeny Gavrilenkov & Vincent Koen, 1994. "How Large Was the the Output Collapse in Russia? Alternative Estimates and Welfare Implications," IMF Working Papers 94/154, International Monetary Fund.
  3. Easterly, William & Fischer, Stanley, 1995. "The Soviet Economic Decline," World Bank Economic Review, World Bank Group, vol. 9(3), pages 341-71, September.
  4. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521296762 is not listed on IDEAS
  5. Commander, Simon & Yemtsov, Ruslan, 1995. "Russian unemployment : its magnitude, characteristics, and regional dimensions," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1426, The World Bank.
  6. Milanovic, Branko, 1995. "Poverty, inequality, and social policy in transition economies," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1530, The World Bank.
  7. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521433297 is not listed on IDEAS
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