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Development Co-operation Report 2013

Ending Poverty

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The Development Co-operation Report (DCR) 2013 explores what needs to be done to achieve rapid and sustainable progress in the global fight to reduce poverty. The world is on track to achieve the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) target of halving the proportion of people whose income is less than USD 1.25 a day. Nonetheless, we are far from achieving the overarching MDG goal of eradicating extreme poverty. While we have learned much about what works in terms of reducing poverty, “getting to zero” remains a challenge in the face of the intractable difficulties of reaching those mired in extreme poverty.

The report  focuses on the very poor and will set out, in concrete terms:

• The nature and dimensions of poverty today

• What development co-operation – and the global partnerships it supports – can do in the fight against poverty

The DCR 2013 will focus on the positive experiences of countries, highlighting policies and approaches that have worked.

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How to measure the many dimensions of poverty?

Ending poverty measured by USD 1.25 per day is unlikely to mean the end of the many overlapping disadvantages faced by poor people, including malnutrition, poor sanitation, a lack of electricity, or ramshackle schools. Ending poverty means addressing its multiple dimensions. This chapter makes the case for a new headline indicator to measure progress towards eradicating poverty in its many dimensions. This indicator could be an adaptation of the Multidimensional Poverty Index, or MPI, that is already being used internationally in the Human Development Report (HDR) and by many countries around the world. The index combines ten indicators reflecting education, health and standards of living; experience in using it suggests that it would be a feasible indicator to complement an income-poverty measure. It would help to bring into view the overlooked poor and to unleash energies for ending other dimensions of poverty as well. This measure would inform, guide and monitor multidimensional poverty reduction policies, adding real value for policy makers. It would also help to monitor the degree to which economic growth is equitable and to show the important links between poverty and sustainability. Eradicating poverty as measured by this new multidimensional index would dismantle a critical mass of deprivations, achieving much more than eradicating USD 1.25 income poverty alone.

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