Pathways Towards Prosperity in Rural Nicaragua: Why households drop in and out of poverty, and some policy suggestions on how to keep them out
While Nicaragua over the past decade has ranked among the poorest countries in Latin America in terms of per capita GDP, data from the last three LSMS surveys (1993, 1998, and 2001) has shown a consistent, though modest, decline in the incidence of poverty. Nationally, the incidence of poverty among individuals has fallen from 50.3 to 45.8 percent over this period. Most poverty is concentrated in the rural sector (with an incidence of 67.8 percent) and in particular in the Central region (75 percent) (World Bank, 2002a). Given the dynamism of agriculture over the last decade, it is somewhat surprising that the reduction of rural poverty has not been greater. Further, this apparent slow, but stable decline in overall poverty incidence masks active movement at the household level in and out of poverty, particularly in the rural sector. At the household level it is much more difficult to find and explain an overall march towards increased living standards. In this paper we analyze the dynamic of poor households moving in and out of poverty, using panel data from the 1998 and 2001 LSMS surveys. The availability of panel data offers an opportunity to analyze who and how households escaped or fell into poverty. What were the principal exit strategies used by households? What are the major determinants of exiting poverty and remaining in poverty? How do poor rural households achieve prosperity? While we touch on both the rural and urban poor, we concentrate primarily on rural households, given their much larger numbers and greater heterogeneity. We apply a variety of methodologies in our analysis of poverty exit strategies. In Section II we provide some background information on the rural sector in Nicaragua, and in Section III we analyze changes in asset ownership and use as well as poverty status. We analyze who has left and entered poverty and provide a description of their characteristics. Given insufficient data points to separate chronic and transient poverty by econometric means, we will instead characterize these different groups of households in descriptive terms. In Section III we briefly describe the situation of agriculture, agricultural assets, and agrarian institutions, the basis of the rural economy in Nicaragua. Next, in Section IV we use econometric methods to find the determinants of changes in welfare over the panel period as measured by consumption and income. In the conclusions in Section V, we will bring these three types of analysis together and build a matrix of poverty exit paths combined with policy recommendations for specific categories of rural households. Full results can be found in Appendices II, while a detailed discussion of panel data issues, most importantly that of attrition, can be found in Appendix I.
|Date of creation:||2002|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: Agricultural Sector in Economic Development Service FAO Viale delle Terme di Caracalla 00153 Rome Italy|
Phone: +39(6) 57051
Fax: +39 06 57055522
Web page: http://www.fao.org/es/esa/
More information through EDIRC
References listed on IDEAS
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.:
- J. Edward Taylor & Antonio Yunez-Naude, 2000. "The Returns from Schooling in a Diversified Rural Economy," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 82(2), pages 287-297.
- Hausman, Jerry A & Wise, David A, 1979. "Attrition Bias in Experimental and Panel Data: The Gary Income Maintenance Experiment," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 47(2), pages 455-73, March.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:fao:wpaper:0212. 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: (Gustavo Anríquez)
If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.
If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.
If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.
Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.