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Vulnerability to Poverty in Fiji


  • Raghbendra Jha


  • Tu Dang
  • K L Sharma


In the extant literature either income or consumption expenditures as measured over short periods of time have been regarded as proxies for the material well-being of households. However, economists have long recognized that a household's sense of well-being depends not just on its average income or expenditures, but also on the risks it faces. Hence vulnerability is a more satisfactory measure of welfare. In this paper we measure the extent of vulnerability as expected poverty, and examine the importance of its determinants, on the basis of a household survey for Fiji. We find that in Fiji, vulnerability (and poverty) is largely a rural phenomenon. Moreover, the distribution of vulnerability across different segments of the population can differ significantly from the distribution of poverty. In addition, there is a sizable fraction of the population Fiji observed to be non-poor but estimated to be vulnerable to poverty. Thus, poverty reduction strategies in Fiji need to incorporate not just alleviation efforts but also prevention.

Suggested Citation

  • Raghbendra Jha & Tu Dang & K L Sharma, 2008. "Vulnerability to Poverty in Fiji," Departmental Working Papers 2008-07, The Australian National University, Arndt-Corden Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:pas:papers:2008-07

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Paul Mosley & Robert Holzmann & Steen Jorgensen, 1999. "Social protection as social risk management: conceptual underpinnings for the social protection sector strategy paper," Journal of International Development, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 11(7), pages 1005-1027.
    2. Robert Holzmann & Steen Jørgensen, 2001. "Social Risk Management: A New Conceptual Framework for Social Protection, and Beyond," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer;International Institute of Public Finance, vol. 8(4), pages 529-556, August.
    3. Christiaensen, Luc J.M. & Boisvert, Richard N., 2000. "On Measuring Household Food Vulnerability: Case Evidence from Northern Mali," Working Papers 127676, Cornell University, Department of Applied Economics and Management.
    4. Ligon, Ethan & Schechter, Laura, 2004. "Evaluating different approaches to estimating vulnerability," Social Protection and Labor Policy and Technical Notes 30159, The World Bank.
    5. Pasquale Scaramozzino, 2006. "Measuring Vulnerability to Food Insecurity," Working Papers 06-12, Agricultural and Development Economics Division of the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO - ESA).
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    1. repec:spr:soinre:v:134:y:2017:i:1:d:10.1007_s11205-016-1419-x is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Taupo, Tauisi & Cuffe, Harold & Noy, Ilan, 2016. "Household vulnerability on the frontline of climate change: The Pacific atoll nation of Tuvalu," Working Paper Series 5319, Victoria University of Wellington, School of Economics and Finance.
    3. Celidoni, Martina, 2011. "Vulnerability to poverty: An empirical comparison of alternative measures," MPRA Paper 33002, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    4. Tsehay, Abrham Seyoum & Bauer, Siegfried, 2012. "Poverty Dynamics and Vulnerability: Empirical Evidence from Smallholders in Northern Highlands of Ethiopia," 2012 Annual Meeting, August 12-14, 2012, Seattle, Washington 126780, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association.
    5. Tsehay, Abrham Seyoum & Bauer, Siegfried, 0. "Poverty and Vulnerability Dynamics: Empirical Evidence from Smallholders in Northern Highlands of Ethiopia," Quarterly Journal of International Agriculture, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, vol. 51.
    6. Jamal, Haroon, 2009. "Assessing Vulnerability to Poverty:Evidence from Pakistan," MPRA Paper 40228, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    7. Tsehay, Abrham Seyoum & Bauer, Siegfried, 2012. "Poverty Dynamics and Vulnerability: Empirical Evidence from Smallholders in Northern Highlands of Ethiopia," 2012 Conference, August 18-24, 2012, Foz do Iguacu, Brazil 126873, International Association of Agricultural Economists.

    More about this item


    Poverty; Vulnerability; Cross-section data; Fiji;

    JEL classification:

    • C21 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Cross-Sectional Models; Spatial Models; Treatment Effect Models
    • C23 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Models with Panel Data; Spatio-temporal Models
    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty

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