More to do on measuring hunger

Joachim De Weerdt, Kathleen Beegle, Jed Friedman, John Gibson, 18 February 2014

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One of the first Millennium Development Goals is to reduce hunger by half between 1990 and 2015. To date, the global hunger count has fallen slightly, from 1 billion in 1990–1992 to 870 million in 2010–2012 (Food and Agriculture Organization 2013). As a proportion of the world’s population, this is just a one-third fall in the hunger rate, from 19% to 13%.

Topics: Poverty and income inequality
Tags: Africa, development, food, hunger, measurement error, Millennium Development Goals, Poverty, surveys, Tanzania

The Great Escape: Health, wealth and the origins of inequality

Angus Deaton interviewed by Viv Davies, 10 Jan 2014

Angus Deaton talks to Viv Davies about his recent book ‘The Great Escape: health, wealth and the origins of inequality’, that explains how inequality is the catalyst for the great escape from poverty and how the world is better because of it. They discuss the state of inequality in the US, economic growth in China and India and the ineffectiveness of international aid. Deaton stresses the importance of understanding that human well being will be achieved only through a holistic approach. The interview was recorded on 17 October 2013.

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The Great Escape: health, wealth and the origins of inequality, by Angus Deaton (Princeton University Press, October 2013).

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Topics: Poverty and income inequality, Productivity and Innovation
Tags: Inequality, Poverty, productivity

Prosperity and Poverty in Latin America and the Caribbean

Louise Cord, Leonardo Lucchetti, Carlos Rodríguez Castelán, Adam Ratzlaff, 23 December 2013

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The Latin America and Caribbean region (LAC) has long been considered the most unequal region in the world. Regardless of whether this stems from a legacy of colonisation or is a 20th century phenomenon (Williamson 2009), the fact remains that the region has some of the highest levels of inequality in the world.

Topics: Poverty and income inequality
Tags: Inequality, Latina America and Caribbean region, Poverty

Do food prices respond to oil-price shocks?

Christiane Baumeister, Lutz Kilian, 30 November 2013

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Increases in agricultural commodity prices and food prices in recent years have raised concerns among policymakers about a global food shortage.

Topics: Global economy
Tags: biofuel, Commodity prices, ethanol, food, oil, Poverty

Growth still is good for the poor

David Dollar, Tatjana Kleineberg, Aart Kraay, 19 November 2013

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With the formulation of the Post-2015 Development Agenda in full swing, it is important to reassess how and to what extent new development challenges should be reflected in the agenda. A key part of the soon-expiring Millennium Development Goals aimed at halving absolute poverty – as defined by the World Bank's $1.25/day standard – between 1990 and 2015.

Topics: Development
Tags: development, growth, Inequality, Millennium Development Goals, Poverty, World Bank

African polygamy: Past and present

James Fenske, 9 November 2013

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Polygamy and poverty are both widespread in sub-Saharan Africa.1 Several arguments have been made suggesting this correlation is causal.

Topics: Development, Economic history, Poverty and income inequality
Tags: Africa, fertility, growth, polygamy, Poverty, slave trade

Lessons from a history of thought on poverty

Martin Ravallion, 13 August 2013

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Over the last 200 years the world as a whole has seen a marked decline in the incidence of absolute poverty (Sala-i-Martin and Pinkovskiy 2010 ). The success of Western Europe and North America over the 19th and 20th Centuries in reducing absolute poverty is well-known, as is the success of China and India in more recent times.

Topics: Development, Economic history
Tags: Poverty

Did trade-policy responses to food-price spikes reduce poverty?

Kym Anderson, Maros Ivanic , Will Martin, 3 August 2013

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Food prices in international markets have spiked three times in the past five years: in mid-2008, early 2011 and mid-2012 (Figure 1). The first prompted urban riots in dozens of developing countries when rice prices more than doubled. It may even have contributed to the unrest that led to the Arab Spring.

Topics: Development, International trade
Tags: food prices, Poverty, trade policy

Rising regional inequality in China: Fact or artefact?

John Gibson, Chao Li, 9 August 2012

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A growing literature uses sub-national data from China to measure trends in regional inequality and to test models of economic growth and convergence. Most published studies use provincial-level data although finer spatial scales, such as prefectures (Roberts et al. 2012) and counties (Banerjee et al. 2012), are starting to be used.

Topics: Development, Poverty and income inequality
Tags: China, Inequality, Poverty

The poor half billion in South Asia: Is there hope for change?

Ejaz Ghani, Lakshmi Iyer, Saurabh Mishra, 9 March 2012

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India and other South Asian countries have experienced high growth rates over the past decade. What has this meant for poverty reduction across different regions of South Asia?

Topics: Development, Poverty and income inequality
Tags: India, Poverty, South Asia

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