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Multidimensional Poverty Measurement in Pakistan: Time Series Trends and Breakdown

Listed author(s):
  • Taseer Salahuddin

    (Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, University of Central Punjab, Lahore)

  • Asad Zaman

    (International Institute of Islamic Economics, International Islamic University, Islamabad)

Traditionally poverty has been understood only as ‘lack of income’. However, with the passage of time it was realised that poverty is a complex and multidimensional phenomenon. Mahboob-ul-Haq (1973) and Sen (1975) argued that development is about enlarging human capabilities, rather than only acquisition of wealth. The purpose of this research is to argue that poverty being multidimensional in nature, cannot be properly measured by unidimensional (income or calorie based) poverty measures. This study has utilised Alkire-Foster Multidimensional (AFM) poverty measure (2007) for building time-series trends of poverty in Pakistan from 1998-2006. The results show that multidimensional poverty measures provide more elaborate and precise picture of poverty. Instead of an absolute poverty line, the AFM measure depicts a spectrum of poverty levels from border-line cases to absolutely poor people. Furthermore, time-series trends of deprivations in multiple dimensions have been built at provincial level in Pakistan. This study demonstrates that people of Pakistan are highly deprived in education and health. Education has shown worst deterioration in past decade and a half. Unfortunately, it is this dimension, which is the foundation for capabilities development in the long run.

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Article provided by Pakistan Institute of Development Economics in its journal The Pakistan Development Review.

Volume (Year): 51 (2012)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 493-504

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Handle: RePEc:pid:journl:v:51:y:2012:i:4:p:493-504
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