Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa

Material poverty and multiple deprivation in Britain: the distinctiveness of multidimensional assessment

  • Rod Hick (a1)

Poverty analysis is currently undergoing a multidimensional turn, increasingly focusing on the many ways in which human life can be impoverished and not just on material poverty. In this paper, we present an analysis of material poverty and multiple deprivation in Britain, which is inspired by the capability approach. We argue that the additional complexity of multidimensional analysis requires that it provides some insight not achieved by a more straightforward approach focusing on material poverty alone. Our findings indicate that whether a multidimensional assessment identifies different people as being in poverty depends on whether our interest is in identifying vulnerable individuals or in identifying vulnerable groups and whether we focus on dimensions in aggregate or disaggregate forms. We find that, although material poverty and multiple deprivation identify very different individuals, they display greater congruence in terms of identifying vulnerable groups, especially where aggregate measures are used.

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.

A. B. Atkinson , B. Cantillon , E. Marlier and B. Nolan (2002) Social Indicators: The EU and Social Inclusion. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

T. Burchardt , J. Le Grand and D. Piachaud (1999) Social Exclusion in Britain 1991–1995. Social Policy and Administration 33(3): 227244.

R. Boarini and M. M. D’Ercole (2006) Measures of Material Deprivation in OECD Countries. Paris: OECD.

M. F. Förster (2005) The European Social Space Revisited: Comparing Poverty in the Enlarged European Union. Journal of Comparative Policy Analysis 7(1): 2948.

B. Halleröd and D. Larsson (2008) Poverty, Welfare Problems and Social Exclusion. International Journal of Social Welfare 17(1): 1525.

R. Hick (2013) Poverty, Preference or Pensioners? Measuring Material Deprivation in the UK. Fiscal Studies 34(1): 3154.

R. Hick (2014) On “Consistent” Poverty. Social Indicators Research 118(3): 10871102.

S. Ibrahim and S. Alkire (2007) Agency and Empowerment: A Proposal for Internationally Comparable Indicators. Oxford Development Studies 35(4): 379403.

S. McKay (2004) Poverty or Preference: What do ‘Consensual Deprivation Indicators’ Really Measure? Fiscal Studies 25(2): 201223.

B. Nolan and C. T. Whelan (2011) Poverty and Deprivation in Europe. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

I. Robeyns (2005) Selecting Capabilities for Quality of Life Measurement. Social Indicators Research 74(1): 191215.

K. Roelen , F. Gassmann and D. Neubourg (2012) False Positives or Hidden Dimensions: What can Monetary and Multidimensional Measurement Tell us about Child Poverty in Vietnam. International Journal of Social Welfare 21: 393407.

M. Tomlinson , R. Walker and G. Williams (2008) Measuring Poverty in Britain as a Multi-Dimensional Concept, 1991 to 2003. Journal of Social Policy 37(4): 597620.

P. Tsakloglou and F. Papadopoulos (2002) Aggregate Level and Determining Factors of Social Exclusion in Twelve European Countries. Journal of European Social Policy 12(3): 211225.

C. T. Whelan , R. Layte , B. Maître and B. Nolan (2001) Income, Deprivation and Economic Strain. European Sociological Review 17(4): 357372.

P. Anand , G. Hunter , I. Carter , K. Dowding , F. Guala and M. van Hees (2009) The development of capability indicators. Journal of Human Development and Capabilities 10(1): 125152.

T. Burchardt and P. Vizard (2011) “Operationalising” the capability approach as a basis for equality and human rights monitoring in Twenty-first century Britain. Journal of Human Development and Capabilities 12(1): 91119.

Recommend this journal

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

Journal of Public Policy
  • ISSN: 0143-814X
  • EISSN: 1469-7815
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-public-policy
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *



Altmetric attention score

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 8
Total number of PDF views: 61 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 241 *
Loading metrics...

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