Multidimensional Poverty Index – Full Form, Facts, Notes

What is the MPI?

  • The Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) is an index used to measure acute poverty, which is defined as the inability of a person to achieve the bare minimum requirements of internationally recognised standards.
  • Over 100 poor nations are included in the MPI, an international indicator of severe multidimensional poverty.

Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)?

  • The Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) is a global indicator of severe multidimensional poverty that includes more than 100 developing nations.
  • It is a measure of poverty that captures the various limitations on living standards, health, and education that impoverished people experience.
  • We can determine how many households are enduring poverty at once using multidimensional poverty indices.

Features of Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

  • The standard indicators of poverty, such as income or consumption, are not the only factors included by the Multidimensional Poverty Index.
  • The MPI assesses persons who suffer from numerous deprivations, such as those who are underweight and lack access to clean drinking water, proper sanitation, or clean fuel.
  • It also includes those who don’t meet the minimal benchmarks for basic functioning set by international agreements.
  • It refers to persons who reside in situations where they simultaneously fall short of numerous basic criteria.
  • By reflecting the acute deprivations in health, education, and living standards that a person suffers concurrently, MPI complements traditional monetary poverty measurements.
  • The MPI measures the degree to which individuals in 104 different nations lack access to extremely basic services and basic human functions.
  • Through dimensions, indicators, and deprivation criteria, the Multiple Poverty Index offers a different lens through which poverty can be seen and understood.
  • The MPI measures poverty on a personal level. The global MPI classifies a person as “MPI poor” if they are deficient in at least three out of ten indicators.

What does the Multi-Dimensional Poverty Index (MPI) measure?

  • The worldwide MPI provides information on who is poor and how they are poor, allowing for the creation of a complete picture of those who are poor.
  • To provide a more thorough assessment of the amount of poverty and deprivation, multidimensional poverty assessments seek to quantify the non-income-based components of poverty.
  • It enables comparisons between nations and world regions as well as between nations by ethnicity, urban/rural location, sub-national region, age group, and other crucial household and community traits.
  • The breakdown of MPI according to each of the 10 indicators for each category and country as a whole reveal how impoverished an individual is.
  • As a result, the MPI and its associated information platform are invaluable as an analytical tool to identify the most vulnerable individuals revealing patterns of poverty within countries and over time, enabling policymakers to more effectively allocate resources and create policies.

Components of Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)

The MPI consists of three dimensions and ten indicators. Two of the ten indicators pertain to health, two to education, and six to living standards. The Sustainable Development Goals(SDGs) are directly related to the MPI indicators.

  • There are 3 dimensions and 10 indicators used while measuring MPI. They are:
    • Health
    • Education
    • Standard of living
  • 10 indicators (health-2, education-2, standard of living-6) of MPI:
    • Health (each indicator weighted equally at 1/6)
      • Child mortality
      • Nutrition
    • Education (each indicator weighted equally at 1/6)
      • Years of schooling
      • Child school attendance
    • Standard of living (each of the six indicators weighted equally at 1/18)
      • Cooking fuel
      • Sanitation
      • Drinking water
      • Electricity
      • Housing
      • Assets

Significance of MPI

  • It may be utilized to paint a complete image of those who live in poverty.  MPI enables comparison across nations or areas. Additionally, it enables comparisons within a single nation between various populations, urban and rural locations, etc.
  • MPI can be applied to various contexts and distinct analytical units in both developed and underdeveloped nations. Maintaining transparency makes it easier to communicate & helps to clearly identify those who are less fortunate. The measurement will be able to concentrate more sharply on the poorest of the poor as the number of dimensions increases.
  • The indicators provided here can be utilized to more effectively target the poorest of the poor and have immediate practical applications.
  • Well- being of different groups in the population can be calculated from it. For example; people from certain ethnic groups, regions, and gender.
  • The measurements can be broken down into dimensions to reveal what dimensions contribute to the most dimensional poverty.

Limitations of Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI):

  • It is difficult or impossible to address every aspect of poverty because it is a complicated problem that depends on many different variables.
  • It can be difficult to collect data for multidimensional indicators.
  • Due to the abundance of indicators, it might be difficult to handle and make accurate assessments, which can result in unsuccessful implementation.
  • Inequality within households and among the poor is not captured.
  • It is hard to determine which and how many aspects are important, should be taken into account, or should be given priority.

Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2021 – Key Findings

  1. On World
  2. 1.3 billion people, or 21.7% of the world’s population, experience acute multidimensional poverty.
  3. Sixty-four million (644 million) of them are minors under the age of 18. Around 85% of people reside in South Asia or Sub-Saharan Africa (556 million people).
  4. About 8.2% of the 105 million multidimensionally poor persons are 60 years of age or older.
  5. In nine ethnic groupings, over 90% of the population lives in poverty, and disparities in multidimensional poverty among ethnic groups are persistently large across several countries.
  6. Disparities between ethnic and racial groups can occasionally be higher than those between areas of a nation.
  • On India
  • The Scheduled Tribe category, which comprises 9.4% of the population and is the poorest, has 65 million members who experience multidimensional poverty out of a total of 129 million.
  • They are the most prevalent and intense (50.6 percent). 94 million of the 283 million members of the Scheduled Caste category, or 33.3%, live in multidimensional poverty.
  • In India, five out of every six people who qualify as multidimensionally poor reside in households where the head of the household belongs to a Scheduled Tribe, Scheduled Caste, or Other Backward Class.

Gender-based MPI

· 836 million people, or 2/3 of the world’s multidimensional poor, reside in households where neither female nor woman has finished at least six years of school.

·  One in six people who are multidimensionally poor reside in households headed by a woman.

·  Because they frequently experience unstable living conditions and have less financial independence and negotiating power, women and girls living in multidimensionally poor households are more likely to experience violence.

Previous Year Question:

The incidence and intensity of poverty are more important in determining poverty based on income alone. In this context analyze the latest United Nations Multidimensional Poverty Index Report. (250 words, 15 marks) (UPSC Mains GS II 2020)

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