How to Target Households in Adaptive Social Protection Systems? Relative Efficiency of Proxy Means Test and Household Economy Analysis in Niger

Social Protection
World Bank Group (WBG)
Pascale Schnitzer
Resource Publication Date:
October, 2016
Content Format:

This study compares the effectiveness of Household Economy Analysis (HEA) and Proxy Means Test (PMT) in targeting households that are poor and vulnerable to poverty in Niger. The HEA targeting method used in Niger was specifically developed to identify food insecure households in response to crises (with no specific measurable welfare defined). By contrast, the PMT in Niger was developed to target households that are chronically poor. The study focuses on the efficiency of the targeting methods in identifying two groups: (1) households with low consumption per capita—as a measure of poverty; and (2) household with a low Food Consumption Score (FCS) during the lean season—as a measure of food insecurity. Results show that PMT and HEA target two largely different types of population and that the performance of each method depends on the welfare indicator used. Yet, combinations of PMT with methods such as HEA, among others, may be considered to identify households suffering from chronic poverty and seasonal food insecurity as part of an efficient and scalable ASP system.

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