Growth, Inequality, and Poverty Reduction in Developing Countries: Recent Global Evidence
The study presents recent global evidence on the transformation of economic growth to poverty reduction in developing countries, with emphasis on the role of income inequality. The focus is on the period since the early-mid-1990s when growth in these countries as a group has been relatively strong, surpassing that of the advanced economies. Both regional and country-specific data are analyzed for the $1.25 and $2.50-level poverty headcount ratios using the most recent World Bank data. The study finds that on average income growth has been the major driving force behind both the declines and increases in poverty. The study, however, documents substantial regional and country differences that are masked by this ‘average’ dominant-growth story. While in the majority of countries, growth was the major factor behind falling or increasing poverty, inequality, nevertheless, played the crucial role in poverty behavior in a large number of countries. And, even in those countries where growth has been the main driver of poverty-reduction, further progress could have occurred under relatively favorable income distribution. For more efficient policymaking, therefore, idiosyncratic attributes of countries should be emphasized. In general, high initial levels of inequality limit the effectiveness of growth in reducing poverty while growing inequality reduces poverty directly for a given level of growth. It would seem judicious, therefore, to accord special attention to reducing inequality in certain countries where income distribution is especially unfavorable. Unfortunately, the present study also points to the limited effects of growth and inequality-reducing policies in low-income countries.
|Date of creation:||2011|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +44-(0)1865 271084
Fax: +44-(0)1865 281447
Web page: http://www.csae.ox.ac.uk/
More information through EDIRC
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Theo S Eicher & Cecilia Garcia Penalosa, .
"Inequality and Growth,"
Discussion Papers in Economics at the University of Washington
0083, Department of Economics at the University of Washington.
- Adams, Richard Jr., 2004. "Economic Growth, Inequality and Poverty: Estimating the Growth Elasticity of Poverty," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(12), pages 1989-2014, December.
- Martin Ravallion & Shaohua Chen & Prem Sangraula, 2009.
"Dollar a Day Revisited,"
World Bank Economic Review,
World Bank Group, vol. 23(2), pages 163-184, June.
- Ravallion, M. & Datt, G., 1991. "Growth and Redistribution Components of Changes in Poverty Measures," Papers 83, World Bank - Living Standards Measurement.
- Fosu, Augustin K., 2010. "Income Distribution and Growth’s Ability to Reduce Poverty: Evidence from Rural and Urban African Economies," Working Paper Series wp2010-92, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Fosu, Augustin K., 2010.
"Inequality, Income and Poverty: Comparative Global Evidence,"
Working Paper Series
wp2010-93, World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Augustin Kwasi Fosu, 2010. "Inequality, Income, and Poverty: Comparative Global Evidence," Social Science Quarterly, Southwestern Social Science Association, vol. 91(s1), pages 1432-1446.
- Augustin Kwasi Fosu, 2010. "Inequality, income and poverty: comparative global evidence," Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series 14010, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
- Kakwani, Nanak, 1993. "Poverty and Economic Growth with Application to Cote d'Ivoire," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 39(2), pages 121-39, June.
- Kalwij, Adriaan & Verschoor, Arjan, 2007. "Not by growth alone: The role of the distribution of income in regional diversity in poverty reduction," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 51(4), pages 805-829, May.
- Augustin Kwasi Fosu, 2009.
"Inequality and the Impact of Growth on Poverty: Comparative Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa,"
Brooks World Poverty Institute Working Paper Series
9809, BWPI, The University of Manchester.
- Augustin Kwasi Fosu, 2009. "Inequality and the Impact of Growth on Poverty: Comparative Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 45(5), pages 726-745.
- Fosu, Augustin Kwasi, 2008. "Inequality and the Impact of Growth on Poverty: Comparative Evidence for Sub-Saharan Africa," Working Paper Series UNU-WIDER Research Paper , World Institute for Development Economic Research (UNU-WIDER).
- Chen, Shaohua & Ravallion, Martin, 2008.
"The developing world is poorer than we thought, but no less successful in the fight against poverty,"
Policy Research Working Paper Series
4703, The World Bank.
- Shaohua Chen & Martin Ravallion, 2010. "The Developing World Is Poorer Than We Thought, but No Less Successful in the Fight Against Poverty," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 125(4), pages 1577-1625, November.
- Dollar, David & Kraay, Aart, 2002.
" Growth Is Good for the Poor,"
Journal of Economic Growth,
Springer, vol. 7(3), pages 195-225, September.
- Anne Epaulard, 2003. "Macroeconomic Performance and Poverty Reduction," IMF Working Papers 03/72, International Monetary Fund.
- Ravallion, Martin, 1997.
"Can high-inequality developing countries escape absolute poverty?,"
Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 51-57, September.
- Ravallion, Martin, 1997. "Can high-inequality developing countries escape absolute poverty?," Policy Research Working Paper Series 1775, The World Bank.
- Augustin Kwasi Fosu, 2008. "Inequality and the growth-poverty nexus: specification empirics using African data," Applied Economics Letters, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 15(7), pages 563-566.
- Ravallion, Martin, 2001.
"Growth, Inequality and Poverty: Looking Beyond Averages,"
Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1803-1815, November.
- Ravallion, Martin, 2001. "Growth, inequality, and poverty : looking beyond averages," Policy Research Working Paper Series 2558, The World Bank.
- Fosu, Augustin Kwasi, 2010. "Does inequality constrain poverty reduction programs? Evidence from Africa," Journal of Policy Modeling, Elsevier, vol. 32(6), pages 818-827, November.
- Datt, Gaurav & Ravallion, Martin, 1992. "Growth and redistribution components of changes in poverty measures : A decomposition with applications to Brazil and India in the 1980s," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 38(2), pages 275-295, April.
- Ravallion, Martin & Chen, Shaohua, 2007.
"China's (uneven) progress against poverty,"
Journal of Development Economics,
Elsevier, vol. 82(1), pages 1-42, January.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:csa:wpaper:2011-07. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Richard Payne)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.