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Measuring Monetary Poverty in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region: Data Gaps and Different Options to Address Them

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  • Atamanov, Aziz

    (World Bank)

  • Tandon, Sharad

    (World Bank)

  • Lopez-Acevedo, Gladys

    () (World Bank)

  • Vergara Bahena, Mexico Alberto

    () (World Bank)

Abstract

This paper identifies gaps in availability, access, and quality of household budget surveys in the Middle East and North Africa region used to measure monetary poverty and evaluates ways to fill these information gaps. Despite improving public access to household budget surveys, the availability and timeliness of welfare data in the Middle East and North Africa region is poor compared to the rest of the world. Closing the data gap requires collection of more HBS data in more countries and improving access to data where it exists. However, when collection of consumption data is not possible, a variety of other second-best strategies can be employed. Using imputation methods can help to measure monetary poverty. Constructing non-monetary poverty and asset indexes from less robust surveys, using non-traditional surveys such as phone surveys, and "big data"—administrative records, social networks and communications data, and geospatial data—can help substitute for, or complement data from existing traditional survey data.

Suggested Citation

  • Atamanov, Aziz & Tandon, Sharad & Lopez-Acevedo, Gladys & Vergara Bahena, Mexico Alberto, 2020. "Measuring Monetary Poverty in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region: Data Gaps and Different Options to Address Them," IZA Discussion Papers 13363, Institute of Labor Economics (IZA).
  • Handle: RePEc:iza:izadps:dp13363
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Middle East and North Africa; poverty; household budget surveys;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • C81 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Data Collection and Data Estimation Methodology; Computer Programs - - - Methodology for Collecting, Estimating, and Organizing Microeconomic Data; Data Access
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • O10 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - General

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