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Can Africa Reduce Poverty by Half by 2015? The Case for a Pro-Poor Growth Strategy

Author

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  • Bigsten, Arne

    () (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

  • Shimeles, Abebe

    () (Department of Economics, School of Economics and Commercial Law, Göteborg University)

Abstract

This study uses simulations to explore the possibility of halving the percentage of people living in extreme poverty in Africa by 2015. A pro-poor growth-scenario and a constant-inequality scenario are compared. It is shown that initial levels of inequality and mean per capita income determine the cumulative growth and inequalityreduction required to achieve the target. The trade-off between growth and inequality varies greatly among countries and their policy-choices are thus quite different. In some cases small changes in income-distribution can have a large effect on poverty, while in others a strong focus on growth is the only viable option.

Suggested Citation

  • Bigsten, Arne & Shimeles, Abebe, 2005. "Can Africa Reduce Poverty by Half by 2015? The Case for a Pro-Poor Growth Strategy," Working Papers in Economics 177, University of Gothenburg, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0177
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    File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/2077/2743
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Dani Rodrik & Arvind Subramanian & Francesco Trebbi, 2004. "Institutions Rule: The Primacy of Institutions Over Geography and Integration in Economic Development," Journal of Economic Growth, Springer, vol. 9(2), pages 131-165, June.
    2. Ravallion, Martin, 2001. "Growth, Inequality and Poverty: Looking Beyond Averages," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 29(11), pages 1803-1815, November.
    3. Aart Kraay, 2004. "When is Growth Pro-Poor? Cross-Country Evidence," IMF Working Papers 04/47, International Monetary Fund.
    4. Acemoglu, Daron & Johnson, Simon & Robinson, James A, 2002. "An African Success Story: Botswana," CEPR Discussion Papers 3219, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Ravallion, Martin & Chen, Shaohua, 2003. "Measuring pro-poor growth," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 78(1), pages 93-99, January.
    6. Timothy Besley & Robin Burgess, 2003. "Halving Global Poverty," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 17(3), pages 3-22, Summer.
    7. Collier, Paul & Hoeffler, Anke, 1998. "On Economic Causes of Civil War," Oxford Economic Papers, Oxford University Press, vol. 50(4), pages 563-573, October.
    8. Son, Hyun Hwa, 2004. "A note on pro-poor growth," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 82(3), pages 307-314, March.
    9. Ravallion, Martin & Datt, Gaurav & van de Walle, Dominique, 1991. "Quantifying Absolute Poverty in the Developing World," Review of Income and Wealth, International Association for Research in Income and Wealth, vol. 37(4), pages 345-361, December.
    10. Sachs, Jeffrey D & Warner, Andrew M, 1997. "Sources of Slow Growth in African Economies," Journal of African Economies, Centre for the Study of African Economies (CSAE), vol. 6(3), pages 335-376, October.
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    1. repec:gam:jecomi:v:5:y:2017:i:4:p:43-:d:119543 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Poverty; pro-poor growth; millennium development goals; Africa;

    JEL classification:

    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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