Revising the global Multidimensional Poverty Index: Empirical insights and robustness


The global Multidimensional Poverty Index, published annually since 2010, captures acute multidimensional poverty in the developing world. In 2018, five of its ten indicators were revised with the purpose of aligning the index to the SDGs insofar as current data permit. This paper provides comprehensive analyses of the consequences of this revision from three perspectives. First, we thoroughly discuss new empirical insights for 105 countries in the developing world based on a dataset including 8.78 million individual observations. Second, we analyse the robustness of country orderings to changes in key parameters, including the poverty cutoff and dimensional weights. Third, we compare the revised and the original specifications by implementing both on the same 105 national datasets. The country orderings in the revised specification are found to be robust to a range of plausible parametric alternatives. Largely, these country orderings are at least as robust as the original one.

Review of Income and Wealth, 19, 385-411

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