A capability approach to the analysis of rural households' wellbeing in Nigeria
Rural households in Nigeria have been characterized as poor, and with little opportunity for development. Many studies have equated poverty with well being, however empirical literature on well being is less researched. This paper attempts bridge the knowledge gap in the empirical literature of well being studies and specifically the use of the capability approach in its application in the Nigerian well being context which is not as well researched as poverty studies. The study made use of the Nigerian Core welfare indices survey questionnaires of 2006 to provide data relevant to capability well being dimensions. The dimensions include housing, health, nutrition, education, asset ownership/economic, information flow and security. The first part of the study involve developing indices of well being using the fuzzy set in order to generate a composite well being index by the elementary indicators of the well being dimensions. The second part of the study used a logistic regression to explore the variability in achieving the composite well being index value by a set of Conversion factors. The fuzzy set result revealed that the capability to attain a desired state of well being is highest with respect to asset ownership and lowest with respect to security. The logistic analysis shows that the predicted probability of attaining the mean capability well being level increases for male headed rural households, increasing educational level and age of the head, increasing household size, employment in the public sector and residence in any other geopolitical zone except the Northwestern zone.
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