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Estimating the Middle Class in Pakistan

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  • Durr-e-Nayab

    (Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, Islamabad)

Abstract

The middle class is primarily an urban phenomenon generally associated with professional occupations, service sector and salaried jobs. Yet despite a general acceptance of the important economic, political and social role that the middle class plays in society, the term itself remains ambiguous and arbitrary. In much of recent literature the middle class is equated with middle income which does not reflect what „class? refers to in classical writings. The present paper takes a multidimensional approach to measure the middle class in Pakistan through a weighted composite index that takes into account all possible factors associated with the concept, including income, occupation, education, housing and lifestyle. Using the Pakistan Social and Living Measurement Survey (PSLM) 2007-08, the magnitude of the middle class in the country, as represented by the „expanded middle class?, is estimated at around 35 percent of the total population. The proposed measure of the middle class has a sense of stability attached to it, making it less susceptible to sudden inflationary shocks than an income-based measure.

Suggested Citation

  • Durr-e-Nayab, 2011. "Estimating the Middle Class in Pakistan," The Pakistan Development Review, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics, vol. 50(1), pages 1-28.
  • Handle: RePEc:pid:journl:v:50:y:2011:i:1:p:1-28
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Vaqar Ahmed & Samavia Batool, 2017. "India-Pakistan Trade: Perspectives from the Automobile Sector in Pakistan," Working Papers id:12263, eSocialSciences.
    2. Lukas Schlogl & Andy Sumner, 2014. "How Middle Class are the ‘Emerging Middle’ or ‘Scooter Class’ in Indonesia? A Household Asset Approach to Social Stratification," Working Papers in Economics and Development Studies (WoPEDS) 201407, Department of Economics, Padjadjaran University, revised May 2014.
    3. Muhammad Jehangir Khan & G. M. Arif, 2016. "Household Charity in Pakistan: Magnitude, Determinants and Its Importance for the Well-being of Society," PIDE-Working Papers 2016:141, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics.
    4. G. M. Arif & Shujaat Farooq, 2012. "Poverty Reduction in Pakistan: Learning from the Experience of China," PIDE Monograph Series 2012:5, Pakistan Institute of Development Economics.
    5. Rashid Amjad, 2014. "Pakistan’s Growth Spurts and Reversals: A Historical Perspective," Lahore Journal of Economics, Department of Economics, The Lahore School of Economics, vol. 19(Special E), pages 91-104, September.
    6. Amjad, Rashid & Yusuf, Anam, 2014. "More and better jobs for Pakistan: Can the manufacturing sector play a greater role," MPRA Paper 59518, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. repec:pid:wpaper:2012:5 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Pakistan; Middle Class; Multidimensional;

    JEL classification:

    • Z13 - Other Special Topics - - Cultural Economics - - - Economic Sociology; Economic Anthropology; Language; Social and Economic Stratification
    • R20 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Household Analysis - - - General
    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics

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