Identifying the poor in developing countries: Do different definitions matter?

Paul Glewwe, Jacques van der Gaag

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

48 Scopus citations


This paper compares several commonly used definitions of poverty. Household survey data from Côte d'Ivoire are examined to see whether different definitions choose the same people as poor. We find that they often do not choose the same people, even though we, a priori, set all the definitions so that 30% of the population is classified as poor. This implies that different definitions of poverty may lead to different policy recommendations, which suggests that more attention should be given to the choice of a particular definition of poverty when analyzing the effects of economic policies on the poor.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)803-814
Number of pages12
JournalWorld Development
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1990


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