Essama-Nssah, Boniface

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Poverty and growth, Program evaluation, Social impact of public policy
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Last updated January 31, 2023
B. Essama-Nssah worked for 17 years for the World Bank in Washington, DC, before he retired as a senior economist in 2011.  During his tenure at the Bank, he performed economic analyses, prepared policy research and technical papers, and conducted an annual training course on impact evaluation methodologies for staff from the World Bank and client countries.  Before joining the World Bank, Essama-Nssah worked for two years as a senior research associate on the Food and Nutrition Program at Cornell University, and for six years as head of the Economics Department and vice dean of the Faculty of Law and Economics of the University of Yaoundé, Cameroon.  He currently works as a consultant focusing on poverty and growth incidence analysis, program evaluation, and analysis of the social impact of public policy. He holds a PhD in economics from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
Citations 3 Scopus

Publication Search Results

Now showing 1 - 3 of 3
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    Measuring the Pro-Poorness of Income Growth within an Elasticity Framework
    (World Bank, Washington, DC, 2006-10) Essama-Nssah, B. ; Lambert, Peter J.
    Poverty reduction has become a fundamental objective of development, and therefore a metric for assessing the effectiveness of various interventions. Economic growth can be a powerful instrument of income poverty reduction. This creates a need for meaningful ways of assessing the poverty impact of growth. This paper follows the elasticity approach to propose a measure of pro-poorness defined as a weighted average of the deviation of a growth pattern from the benchmark case. The measure can help assess pro-poorness both in terms of aggregate poverty measures, which are members of the additively separable class, and at percentiles. It also lends itself to a decomposition procedure, whereby the overall pattern of income growth can be unbundled, and the contributions of income components to overall pro-poorness identified. An application to data for Indonesia in the 1990s reveals that the amount of poverty reduction achieved over that period remains far below what would have been achieved under distributional neutrality. This conclusion is robust to the choice of a poverty measure among members of the additively separable class, and can be tracked back to changes in expenditure components.
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    Counterfactual Decomposition of Pro-Poorness Using Influence Functions
    (Taylor and Francis, 2015-12-11) Essama-Nssah, B. ; Lambert, Peter J.
    Poverty reduction has emerged as a fundamental social objective of development, and has become a metric commonly used to assess the performance of public policy. This paper adapts the methodology of Firpo, Fortin and Lemieux (2009) [2009. “Unconditional Quantile Regressions.” Econometrica 77 (3): 953–973] to the measurement of the pro-poorness of income growth. The method allows the analyst to identify co-variates that affect poverty reduction. The methodology is policy-relevant because policy-makers can better target these co-variates than the average level of income, or the level of inequality. We demonstrate this by application to Bangladesh 2000–2010.
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    Measuring Pro-poorness: A Unifying Approach with New Results
    ( 2009) Essama-Nssah, B. ; Lambert, Peter J.
    Recent economic literature on pro-poor growth measurement is drawn together, using a common analytical framework which lends itself to some significant extensions. First, a new class of pro-poorness measures is defined, to complement existing classes, with similarities and differences which are fully discussed. Second, all of these measures of pro-poorness can be decomposed across income sources or components of consumption expenditure (depending on the application). This permits the analyst to "unbundle" a pattern of growth, revealing the contributions to overall pro-poorness of constituent parts. Third, all of these pro-poorness measures can be modified to measure pro-poorness at percentiles. An application to consumption expenditures in Indonesia in the 1990s reveals that the poverty reduction achieved remains far below what would have been achieved under distributional neutrality. This can be tracked back to changes in expenditure components.