The Unfairness of (Poverty) Targets

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dc.contributor.author
Allwine, Melanie
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dc.contributor.author
Rigolini, Jamele
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dc.contributor.author
López-Calva, Luis F.
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dc.date.accessioned
2013-04-11T19:31:08Z
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dc.date.available
2013-04-11T19:31:08Z
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dc.date.issued
2013-02
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dc.identifier.uri
http://hdl.handle.net/10986/13159
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dc.description.abstract
Adopted on September 8, 2000, the United Nations Millennium Declaration stated as its first goal that countries "...[further] resolve to halve, by the year 2015, the proportion of the world's people whose income is less than one dollar a day and the proportion of people who suffer from hunger..." Each country committed to achieve the stated goal, regardless of their initial conditions in terms of poverty and inequality levels. This paper presents a framework to quantify how much initial conditions affect poverty reduction, given a level of "effort" (growth). The framework used in the analysis allows for the growth elasticity of poverty to vary according to changes in the income distribution along the dynamic path of growth and redistribution, unlike previous examples in the literature where this is assumed to be constant. While wealthier countries did perform better in reducing poverty in the last decade and a half (1995-2008), assuming equal initial conditions, the situation reverses: the paper finds a statistically significant negative relation between initial average income and poverty reduction performance, with the poorest countries in the sample going from the worst to the best performers in poverty reduction. The analysis also quantifies how much poorer countries would have scored better, had they had the same level of initial average income as wealthier countries. The results suggest a remarkable change in poverty reduction performance, in addition to the reversal of ranks from worst to best performers. The application of this framework goes beyond poverty targets and the Millennium Development Goals. Given the widespread use of targets to determine resource allocation in education, health, or decentralized social expenditures, it constitutes a helpful tool to measure policy performance toward all kinds of goals. The proposed framework can be useful to evaluate the importance of initial conditions on outcomes, for a wide array of policies.
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dc.language
English
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dc.language.iso
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dc.publisher
World Bank, Washington, DC
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dc.relation.ispartofseries
Policy Research Working Paper;No. 6361
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dc.rights
CC BY 3.0 Unported
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dc.rights.uri
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0/
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dc.subject
ANNUAL % CHANGE
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dc.subject
ANNUAL CHANGE
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dc.subject
AVERAGE INCOME
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AVERAGE MONTHLY PER CAPITA INCOME
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dc.subject
CARIBBEAN REGION
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dc.subject
CHANGES IN POVERTY
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dc.subject
COUNTERFACTUAL
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dc.subject
DAILY INCOME
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dc.subject
DATA AVAILABILITY
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dc.subject
DEVELOPING COUNTRIES
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dc.subject
DEVELOPMENT GOALS
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dc.subject
DEVELOPMENT POLICY
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dc.subject
DIMENSIONS OF POVERTY
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dc.subject
DISTRIBUTION EFFECT
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dc.subject
DISTRIBUTIONAL CHANGE
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dc.subject
ECONOMIC GROWTH
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dc.subject
ECONOMIC PERFORMANCE
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dc.subject
EXTREME POVERTY
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dc.subject
EXTREME POVERTY LINE
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dc.subject
FOOD POLICY
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dc.subject
GINI COEFFICIENT
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dc.subject
GROWTH ELASTICITY
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dc.subject
GROWTH PERFORMANCE
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dc.subject
GROWTH RATES
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dc.subject
HEAD COUNT RATIO
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dc.subject
HEADCOUNT RATIO
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dc.subject
HIGH POVERTY
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dc.subject
HOUSEHOLD SURVEYS
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dc.subject
IMPACT ON POVERTY REDUCTION
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dc.subject
INCIDENCE OF POVERTY
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dc.subject
INCOME DISTRIBUTION
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dc.subject
INCOME DISTRIBUTIONS
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dc.subject
INCOME INEQUALITY
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dc.subject
INEQUALITY CONSTANT
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INEQUALITY LEVELS
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dc.subject
LOG-NORMAL DISTRIBUTION
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dc.subject
LONG RUN
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dc.subject
MEAN EXPENDITURES
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dc.subject
MEAN INCOME
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MEAN INCOME GROWTH
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dc.subject
ORDINARY LEAST SQUARES REGRESSION
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dc.subject
PER CAPITA INCOME
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dc.subject
PERFORMANCE INDICATORS
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dc.subject
POLICY RESEARCH
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dc.subject
POOR
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dc.subject
POOR COUNTRIES
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dc.subject
POVERTY CHANGE
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dc.subject
POVERTY CHANGES
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dc.subject
POVERTY EFFECTS
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dc.subject
POVERTY GAP
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dc.subject
POVERTY IMPACT
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dc.subject
POVERTY LEVELS
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dc.subject
POVERTY LINE
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dc.subject
POVERTY MEASUREMENT
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dc.subject
POVERTY MEASURES
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dc.subject
POVERTY RATE
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dc.subject
POVERTY RATES
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dc.subject
POVERTY REDUCTION
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POVERTY REDUCTION EFFORTS
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POVERTY REDUCTION TARGETS
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REDUCING POVERTY
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REDUCTION IN POVERTY
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dc.subject
REGIONAL AVERAGES
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REGIONAL POVERTY
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RESOURCE ALLOCATION
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dc.subject
STANDARD DEVIATION
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dc.subject
SUSTAINABLE POVERTY
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dc.subject
SUSTAINABLE POVERTY REDUCTION
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dc.title
The Unfairness of (Poverty) Targets
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okr.identifier.externaldocumentum
000158349_20130213160330
en_US
okr.identifier.internaldocumentum
17288977
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okr.volume
1 of 1
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okr.date.disclosure
2013-02-01
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okr.topic
Services and Transfers to Poor
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okr.topic
Poverty Reduction :: Rural Poverty Reduction
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okr.topic
Poverty Reduction :: Achieving Shared Growth
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okr.topic
Macroeconomics and Economic Growth :: Regional Economic Development
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okr.topic
Poverty Monitoring and Analysis
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okr.identifier.report
WPS6361
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okr.identifier.doi
10.1596/1813-9450-6361
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okr.unit
Development Research Group (DECRG)
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okr.doctype
Publications & Research :: Policy Research Working Paper
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okr.doctype
Publications & Research
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dc.rights.holder
World Bank
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okr.globalpractice
Macroeconomics and Fiscal Management
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okr.globalpractice
Poverty
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okr.googlescholar.linkpresent
yes

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