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Poverty in a multidimensional perspective: Great Britain and Germany in comparison


  • Böhnke, Petra
  • Delhey, Jan


This paper deals with the issue of poverty in a comparative and multidimensional perspective. Based on Townsend’s concept of relative deprivation, we analyse what people can afford compared to their perceived necessities for decent living. We will analyse definitions of living standard and social deprivation within two European countries which provide sufficient data and differ in their institutional settings: Britain and Germany. The assumption is that different welfare regimes and different social policies will bring about dissimilar deprivation risks. In addition, the concept of deprivation is combined with income poverty to focus on those who are affected by both shortages, low income and a low standard of living. With a multivariate analysis deprivation risks other than income are examined. Indicators of subjective well-being show the effect different poverty levels have on people’s satisfaction in several life domains. The results underline the importance of taking into account different poverty aspects; standard of living turns out to be the main factor to explain overall life satisfaction and can well be seen as the core of multidimensional poverty research.

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  • Böhnke, Petra & Delhey, Jan, 1999. "Poverty in a multidimensional perspective: Great Britain and Germany in comparison," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Social Structure and Social Reporting FS III 99-413, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:wzbssr:fsiii99413

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    1. Böhnke, Petra & Delhey, Jan, 1999. "Lebensstandard und Armut im vereinten Deutschland," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Social Structure and Social Reporting FS III 99-408, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
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    Cited by:

    1. Luis Ayala (*) & Carolina Navarro, "undated". "Multidimensional Indices Of Housing Deprivation With Application To Spain," Working Papers 12-04 Classification-JEL , Instituto de Estudios Fiscales.
    2. Busch, Christopher & Peichl, Andreas, 2010. "The Development of Multidimensional Poverty in Germany 1985-2007," IZA Discussion Papers 4922, Institute for the Study of Labor (IZA).
    3. Whelan, Christopher T. & Maitre, Bertrand & Nolan, Brian, 2007. "Multiple Deprivation and Multiple Disadvantage in Ireland: An Analysis of EU-SILC," Research Series, Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI), number PRS61.
    4. Böhnke, Petra, 2001. "Nothing left to lose? Poverty and social exclusion in comparison. Empirical evidence on Germany," Discussion Papers, Research Unit: Social Structure and Social Reporting FS III 01-402, Social Science Research Center Berlin (WZB).
    5. Ambra Poggi & Giulia Bizzotto & Francesco Devicienti & Patrik Vesan & Claudia Villosio, 2011. "Quality of Life in Europe: Empirical evidence," LABORatorio R. Revelli Working Papers Series 107, LABORatorio R. Revelli, Centre for Employment Studies.
    6. Timo-Kolja Pfoertner & Hans-Juergen Andress & Christian Janssen, 2011. "Income or living standard and health in Germany: different ways of measurement of relative poverty with regard to self-rated health," International Journal of Public Health, Springer;Swiss School of Public Health (SSPH+), vol. 56(4), pages 373-384, August.
    7. Dekkers, Gijs, 2003. "Financial and Multidimensional Poverty in European Countries: can the former be used as a proxy of the latter?," IRISS Working Paper Series 2003-13, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.

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