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Privaciones nutricionales : su vínculo con la pobreza y el ingreso monetario


  • Marcelo Bérgolo


  • Martín Leites


  • Gonzalo Salas

    () (Universidad de la República (Uruguay). Facultad de Ciencias Económicas y de Administración. Instituto de Economía)


This study explores empirical differences in poverty analysis under two distinct normative approaches: income poverty and Amartya Sen’s capability approach, focusing on nutritional achievement as the main dimension to measure poverty in the latter. The analysis focuses on the association between income poverty and individual deprivation in terms of child malnutrition for those attending the first grade at public institutions in Uruguay. The results from this study will provide evidence on the extent to which the measurement of poverty using monetary methods may approximate other dimensions of human well-being. In addition, this document also analyses the determinants of nutritional achievement for children. To address this last issue, the analysis estimates a production function for nutritional achievements, which allows exploring differences in individual characteristics; and also sheds light on the way in which household income is transformed into nutritional achievements for Uruguayan children. The data for the empirical estimation is drawn from the survey "El estado nutricional de los niños y las políticas alimentarias", carried out by the Instituto de Economía de la Universidad de la República (IECON) and supported by CSIC, PNUD y UNICEF, which was directed at households with young children who were attending the first grade at public schools in Uruguay during 2004. The results confirm the relevance of income as a path to well-being. However, the evidence indicates that classifying households as extreme poor according to a monetary definition is not sufficient to approximate their nutritional deprivation. In addition, the findings suggest that nutritional outcomes for children are dependent on a set of individual, household and community factors, which also influence the transformational potential of household monetary resources. Among the factors which stand out are: the level of mother’s health –especially their nutritional performance and reproductive history–, children’s health, educational level of the household’s members and access to a set of public goods.

Suggested Citation

  • Marcelo Bérgolo & Martín Leites & Gonzalo Salas, 2006. "Privaciones nutricionales : su vínculo con la pobreza y el ingreso monetario," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 06-03, Instituto de Economía - IECON.
  • Handle: RePEc:ulr:wpaper:dt-03-06

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Haughton, Dominique & Haughton, Jonathan, 1997. "Explaining Child Nutrition in Vietnam," Economic Development and Cultural Change, University of Chicago Press, vol. 45(3), pages 541-556, April.
    2. Sen, Amartya, 1979. "The Welfare Basis of Real Income Comparisons: A Survey," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 17(1), pages 1-45, March.
    3. Todd Jewell & Patricia Triunfo & Rafael Aguirre, 2004. "Los Factores de Riesgo y el Peso al Nacer en el Uruguay," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 1304, Department of Economics - dECON.
    4. Ravallion, Martin & Lokshin, Michael, 2003. "On the utility consistency of poverty lines," Policy Research Working Paper Series 3157, The World Bank.
    5. Todd Jewell & Patricia Triunfo & Rafael Aguirre, 2004. "Impacto de los cuidados Prenatales en el Peso al Nacer: El Caso del Uruguay," Documentos de Trabajo (working papers) 0704, Department of Economics - dECON.
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    More about this item


    Poverty measure; Sen’s capability approach; child malnutrition; Uruguay;

    JEL classification:

    • I32 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - Measurement and Analysis of Poverty
    • I31 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Welfare, Well-Being, and Poverty - - - General Welfare, Well-Being
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior


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