A Multi-Country Analysis of Multidimensional Poverty in Contexts of Forced Displacement

This seminar is organised jointly with the Institute for International Economic Policy at George Washington University and the UNDP Human Development Report Office. This seminar will be held online. Registration: gwu-edu.zoom.us/meeting/register/tJAvc-CrrjMiGdxu_pt563OZHLp1WZWKzmKw.

Although forcibly displaced communities face many simultaneous deprivations in their daily lives, in access to education, food security, adequate housing, etc., there is relatively little research on how the multidimensional poverty of these populations differs in both level and composition from that of host communities. This paper presents a multi-country descriptive analysis of multidimensional poverty among forcibly displaced populations and host communities. The paper uses household survey data containing detailed household information and displacement-specific information from Ethiopia, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, and Sudan to create a Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) that captures the overlapping deprivations experienced by poor individuals and households in these countries. It then uses this MPI to explore relationships between multidimensional poverty, displacement status, and gender of the household head, as well as examining the mismatches and overlaps between MPI and monetary poverty. The results reveal significant differences across displaced and host communities in all countries except Nigeria. In three of the countries (Ethiopia, South Sudan, Sudan) female-headed households have higher MPIs, while in Somalia, those living in male-headed households are more likely to be identified as multidimensionally poor. We also find mismatches between the proportion of people classified as poor by the MPI and the international $1.90/day monetary poverty line, which verifies the need for complementary measures when assessing deprivations among the forcibly displaced.

Yeshwas Admasu Bogale is part of the Research Fellow in Forced Displacement program which is supported by the DFID-UNHCR-WB program on building the evidence on forced displacement. He is working on the Gender Dimensions of Forced Displacement research program. In his current research, he examines the gender differences in access to resources and opportunities for restoring livelihoods among refugees in Ethiopia. His main research interests are in development economics and agricultural economics, with a special focus in applying impact evaluation techniques. He has a PhD in economics from Heriot-Watt University in United Kingdom and MSc in Economics from the University of Copenhagen.

About the Series: The Institute for International Economic Policy (IIEP) at George Washington University and the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI), with the support of the United Nations Development Programme’s Human Development Report Office (UNDP HDRO), are pleased to announce new events in our special seminar series on the global Multidimensional Poverty Index (global MPI). Goal 1 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is to end poverty in all its forms and dimensions. The global MPI 2020 offers a tool to make progress towards this goal.

Produced in partnership with the UNDP HDRO, the global MPI 2020 compares acute multidimensional poverty for 107 countries in developing regions and provides a detailed image of who is poor and how they are poor. It offers both a global headline and a fine-grained analysis covering 1,279 sub-national regions, and important disaggregation such as children, and people living in urban or rural areas, together with the indicator deprivations of each group. Bringing together the academic and policy spheres, this series of seminars will highlight topics such as sensitivity analyses, overlapping deprivations, changes over time (poverty trends), and inequality using the global data. The sessions will also include work that applies the global MPI methodology, the Alkire-Foster method, to innovative measures.