Population, Vulnerability and Poverty: A Methodological Exploration Based on Iquitos, Peru

Richard Bilsborrow, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

In recent years the theme of global poverty has come to take on ever-increasing importance, as the World Bank and other multilateral and bilateral donors have come to focus more on how its development assistance can better contribute to poverty reduction in low-income countries. The focus on poverty also coincides with the UN-system focus on the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), with Goal number 1 being that of reducing poverty to half the 1990 levels in each country by 2015. On the other hand, it has come to be recognized that monetary poverty, whether based on income or consumption data, does not capture key aspects of the lives of the poor. In particular, factors that they are particularly exposed to may drop them below the poverty line, even if they are not poor. These aspects can be considered to be embodied in another term that has come to take on its own popularity, “vulnerability.”

Presented in Session 14: Social Programs and Economic Well-Being in Developing Countries