Pakistan Institute of Development Economics



Measuring Multidimensional Poverty and Inequality in Pakistan

The key development objective of Pakistan, since its existence, has been to reduce poverty, inequality and to improve the condition of its people. While this goal seems very important in itself yet is also necessary for the eradication of other social, political and economic problems. The objective to eradicate poverty has remained same but methodology to analysing this has changed. It can be said that failure of most of the poverty strategies is due to lack of clear choice of poverty definition. A sound development policy including poverty alleviation hinges upon accurate and well-defined measurements of multidimensional socio-economic characteristics which reflect the ground realities confronting the poor and down trodden rather than using some abstract/income based criteria for poverty measurement. Conventionally welfare has generally been measured using income or expenditures criteria. Similarly, in Pakistan poverty has been measured mostly in uni-dimension, income or expenditures variables. However, recent literature on poverty has pointed out some drawbacks in measuring uni-dimensional poverty in terms of money. It is argued that uni-dimensional poverty measures are insufficient to understand the wellbeing of individuals. Poverty is a multidimensional concept rather than a unidimensional. Uni-dimensional poverty is unable to capture a true picture of poverty because poverty is more than income deprivation

Maqbool H. Sial,

Asma Noreen,

Rehmat Ullah Awan