Skip to main content
×
Home
    • Aa
    • Aa

Poverty as Capability Deprivation: Conceptualising and Measuring Poverty in Contemporary Europe

  • Rod Hick (a1)
Abstract
Abstract

Poverty analysis is in the midst of a multidimensional “turn” due, in part, to the growing awareness of the limitations of relative income measures of poverty. In this paper, we argue that the conceptualisation of poverty remains a neglected aspect of this multidimensional turn to date, and demonstrate that the counter-intuitive results which flow from relative income analyses are not problems of measurement, but are entirely consistent with the conceptualisation of poverty under Peter Townsend’s dominant Poverty as Relative Deprivation framework. In response to these problems we articulate an alternative framework, Poverty as Capability Deprivation, drawing on Amartya Sen’s capability approach, and argue that this provides more persuasive explanations as to why some nations have greater poverty than others and why poverty remains a problem even in the richest nations.

Résumé

L’analyse de la pauvreté est au beau milieu d’un « tournant » multidimensionnel dû, en partie, à la prise de conscience croissante des limites des mesures de pauvreté en termes de revenus relatifs. Dans cet article, nous affirmons non seulement que la conceptualisation de la pauvreté reste un aspect négligé de ce tournant multidimensionnel, mais nous démontrons que les résultats contre-intuitifs qui découlent des analyses en termes de revenus relatifs ne sont pas des problèmes de mesure, mais sont avant tout congruents avec le cadre dominant de la pauvreté défini par Peter Townsend dans son ouvrage intitulé La Pauvreté comme Privation Relative. Pour résoudre ces problèmes, nous élaborons un cadre alternatif qui s’appuie sur l’approche des « capacités » d’Amartya Sen, La Pauvreté comme privation de capacité, et qui permet d’expliquer pourquoi certaines nations conservent un niveau de pauvreté plus élevé que d’autres et pourquoi la pauvreté demeure un problème même dans les nations les plus riches.

Zusammenfassung

Die Armutsdiagnose befindet sich inmitten einer multidimensionalen Wende, die zum Teil auf das wachsende Zugeständnis zurückzuführen ist, dass Einkommensmaßnahmen nur begrenzte Auswirkungen auf die Armut haben. In diesem Beitrag behaupten wir, dass die Konzeptualisierung der Armut im Rahmen dieser multidimensionalen Wende vernachlässigt wird und zeigen auf, dass die gegenintuitiven Ergebnisse, die auf relativen Einkommensuntersuchungen fußen, keine Messfehler sind, sondern sich durch Peter Townsends Konzeptualisierung der Armut, wie in seinem Werk „Poverty as Relative Deprivation“ beschrieben, erklären lassen. Zur Problemlösung tragen wir mit einem alternativen Raster bei, „Poverty as Capability Deprivation“ – Armut als Fähigkeitsentzug, aufbauend auf Amartya Sens Fähigkeitsansatz und argumentieren, dass dieser Ansatz besser erklärt, warum manche Nationen eine größere Armut als andere kennen und warum Armut selbst in reichsten Ländern ein Problem bleibt.

Copyright
Linked references
Hide All

This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Sabina Alkire , 2007. “The Missing Dimensions of Poverty Data: Introduction to the Special Issue”, Oxford Development Studies, 35 (4): 347-359.

Sabina Alkire and James Foster , 2011. “Counting and Multidimensional Poverty Measurement”, Journal of Public Economics, 95 (7), 476-487.

Tony Atkinson , Bea Cantillon , ., 2002. Social indicators: The EU and Social Inclusion (Oxford, Oxford University Press).

Richard Berthoud and Mark Bryan , 2011). “Income, Deprivation and Poverty: A Longitudinal Analysis”, Journal of Social Policy, 40 (1): 135-156.

Jonathan Bradshaw and Naomi Finch , 2003. “Overlaps in Dimensions of Poverty”, Journal of Social Policy, 32 (4): 513-525.

Jonathan Bradshaw , Petra Hoelscher , ., 2007. “An index of child well-being in the European Union”, Social Indicators Research, 80 (1): 133-177.

Manuela Coromaldi and Mariengela Zoli , 2012). “Deriving Multidimensional Poverty Indicators: Methodological Issues and an Empirical Analysis for ItalySocial indicators research, 107 (1): 37-54.

Len Doyal and Ian Gough , 1991). A Theory of Human Need (Basingstoke, Macmillan Education Ltd).

Jay Drydyk , 2011. “Responsible Pluralism, Capabilities, and Human Rights”, Journal of Human Development and Capabilities, 12 (1): 39-61.

Tony Fahey , 2007. “The Case for an EU-Wide Measure of Poverty”, European Sociological Review, 23 (1): 35-47.

Rod Hick , 2012. “The Capability Approach: Insights for a New Poverty Focus”, Journal of Social Policy, 41 (2): 291-208.

Rod Hick , 2013. “Poverty, Preference or Pensioners? Measuring Material Deprivation in the UK”, Fiscal Studies, 34 (1): 31-54.

Julian Le Grand , 1991. Equity and choice: An essay in economics and applied philosophy (London, Harper Collins Academic).

Seosamh MacCàrthaigh , 2014. “Need and Poverty”, Policy and Politics, 42 (3): 459-473.

Stephen McKay , 2004. “Poverty or Preference: What Do ‘Consensual Deprivation Indicators’ Really Measure?”, Fiscal Studies, 25 (2): 201-223.

Brian Nolan and Christopher T. Whelan , 2011. Poverty and Deprivation in Europe (Oxford, Oxford University Press).

Martin Ravallion , 2011. “On Multidimensional Indices of Poverty”, Journal of Economic Inequality, 9 (2): 235-248.

Ingrid Robeyns , 2003. “Sen’s Capability Approach and Gender Equality: Selecting Relevant Capabilities”, Feminist Economic, 9 (2/3): 61-92.

Ingrid Robeyns , 2005). “Assessing Global Poverty and Inequality: Income, Resources and Capabilities”, Metaphilosophy, 36 (1/2): 30-49.

Peter Saunders and Aya Abe , 2010. “Poverty and Deprivation in Young and Old: A Comparative Study of Australia And Japan”, Poverty and Public Policy, 2 (1): 67-97.

Peter Townsend , 1954. “Measuring poverty”, The British Journal of Sociology, 5 (2): 130-137.

Peter Townsend , 1962. “The meaning of poverty”, The British Journal of Sociology, 13 (3): 210-227.

Peter Townsend , 1987. “Deprivation”, Journal of Social Policy, 16 (2): 125-146.

Udaya R Waglé ., 2008. “Multidimensional Poverty: An Alternative Measurement Approach for the United States?”, Social Science Research, 37 (2): 559-580.

Christopher T. Whelan and Bertrand Maître , 2014. “Multidimensional Poverty Measurement in Europe: An Application of the Adjusted Headcount Approach”, Journal of European Social Policy, 24 (2): 183-197.

Jonathan Wolff and de-Shalit Avner , 2007. Disadvantage (Oxford, Oxford University Press).

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

European Journal of Sociology / Archives Européennes de Sociologie
  • ISSN: 0003-9756
  • EISSN: 1474-0583
  • URL: /core/journals/european-journal-of-sociology-archives-europeennes-de-sociologie
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Keywords:

Metrics

Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 5
Total number of PDF views: 62 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 251 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 27th May 2017. This data will be updated every 24 hours.