Measuring Poverty: A Proposal

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This chapter documents a participatory approach to developing a new, gender-sensitive measure of deprivation that improves upon existing measures of poverty and gender equity. Over 3 years, across 18 sites in Angola, Fiji, Indonesia, Malawi, Mozambique, and the Philippines, men and women in poor communities engaged in a range of qualitative discussions and quantitative evaluation exercises to help develop the Individual Deprivation Measure. The IDM tracks deprivation in 15 dimensions, uses interval scales within dimensions and can easily be administered in most impoverished areas. It represents a significant advance in multidimensional measurement by focusing on individuals rather than households, by covering all important dimensions of poverty, by being gender-sensitive in the selection and coding of dimensions and by being appropriately sensitive to the depth of deprivation. The IDM demonstrates the possibility of establishing objective tools of social valuation through a process of public reason.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationOxford Handbook of Well-Being and Public Policy
EditorsMatthew D Adler, Marc Fleurbaey
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2016