Social Indicators Research

, Volume 127, Issue 1, pp 1–38 | Cite as

The Colombian Multidimensional Poverty Index: Measuring Poverty in a Public Policy Context

Article

Abstract

Previous multidimensional indices for the Colombian context, such as the Unmet Basic Needs Index or the Living Conditions Index, have lost their public policy relevance and arguably have become poor instruments for poverty measurement. This paper presents the Colombian Multidimensional Poverty Index (CMPI), a synthetic indicator that overcomes the methodological problems from previous multidimensional indices and has a broad public policy scope of use. The CMPI is based on the methodology of Alkire and Foster (J Public Econ 95:476–478, 2011a) and is composed of five dimensions (education of household members, childhood and youth conditions, health, employment and access to household utilities and living conditions). Additionally, it uses a nested weighting structure, where each dimension is equally weighted, as is each indicator within each dimension. This paper proposes the CMPI for tracking multiple deprivations across the national territory, to monitor public policies by sector and to design poverty reduction goals, among other public policy uses. Analysis of the results demonstrates that multidimensional poverty in Colombia decreased between 1997 and 2010 in both urban and rural areas, but imbalances remain.

Keywords

Multidimensional poverty Colombia Alkire and Foster measures Deprivation Urban and rural differences 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.BogotáColombia
  2. 2.Institute of Social and Economic Research (ISER)University of EssexColchesterUK
  3. 3.Universidad de los AndesBogotáColombia

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