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Are the World’s Poorest Being Left Behind?

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  • Martin Ravallion

Abstract

The traditional approach to poverty measurement puts no explicit weight on success at increasing the typical level of living of the poorest—raising the consumption floor. To address this deficiency, the paper defines and measures the expected value of the floor, allowing for transient effects and measurement errors in survey data. On using all suitable and available surveys for the developing world over 1981-2011, the expected value of the floor is about half the $1.25 a day poverty line. There has been only modest progress in raising the floor, despite much progress in reducing the number living near the floor.

Suggested Citation

  • Martin Ravallion, 2014. "Are the World’s Poorest Being Left Behind?," NBER Working Papers 20791, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:20791
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    1. Les plus pauvres ont-ils été laissés à la traîne ?
      by ? in D'un champ l'autre on 2015-01-13 00:27:00

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    1. Nora Lustig & Jacques Silber, 2016. "Introduction to the Special Issue on Global Poverty Lines," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 14(2), pages 129-140, June.
    2. Martin Ravallion, 2020. "Book review of Measuring Poverty around the World," The Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer;Society for the Study of Economic Inequality, vol. 18(1), pages 131-136, March.
    3. Rory Horner & David Hulme, 2019. "From International to Global Development: New Geographies of 21st Century Development," Development and Change, International Institute of Social Studies, vol. 50(2), pages 347-378, March.
    4. Margitic, Juan & Ravallion, Martin, 2019. "Lifting the floor? Economic development, social protection and the developing World's poorest," Journal of Development Economics, Elsevier, vol. 139(C), pages 97-108.
    5. Ravallion, Martin, 2019. "Guaranteed employment or guaranteed income?," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 115(C), pages 209-221.
    6. Robert C. Allen, 2017. "Absolute Poverty: When Necessity Displaces Desire," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 107(12), pages 3690-3721, December.
    7. Dean Jolliffe & Juan Margitic & Martin Ravallion, 2019. "Food Stamps and America’s Poorest," NBER Working Papers 26025, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    8. Rory Horner & David Hulme, 2017. "Converging divergence? Unpacking the new geography of 21st century global development," Global Development Institute Working Paper Series 102017, GDI, The University of Manchester.

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    More about this item

    JEL classification:

    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • I38 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Government Programs; Provision and Effects of Welfare Programs
    • O15 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Economic Development: Human Resources; Human Development; Income Distribution; Migration

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