Are Poor Individuals Mainly Found in Poor Households? Evidence Using Nutrition Data for Africa
This WBG Policy Research Working Paper questions the ability of antipoverty policies to reach vulnerable individuals. The authors used undernutrition as the measure of individual welfare and reviewed data from 30 countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. They find undernourished women and children are, in fact, spread widely across the distributions of wealth and consumption. For instance, roughly three-quarters of underweight women and undernourished children are not found in the poorest 20 percent of households. These results are consistent with evidence of substantial intrahousehold inequality, and suggest a need for coverage targets in social policies other income poverty.
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