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Poverty, undernutrition, and child mortality: Some inter-regional puzzles and their implicationsfor research and policy
Authors: Stephan Klasen
Source: Journal of Economic Inequality, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 89-115
Topic(s): Childhood mortality
Nutrition
Poverty
Country: Africa
   Multiple African Countries
Published: MAR 2008
Abstract: This paper examines the relationship between measures of income poverty, undernourishment, childhood undernutrition, and child mortality in developing countries. While there is, as expected, a close aggregate correlation between these measures of deprivation, the measures generate some inter-regional paradoxes. Income poverty and child mortality is highest in Sub Saharan Africa, but childhood undernutrition is by far the highest in South Asia, while the share of people with insufficient calories (undernourishment) is highest in the Caribbean. The paper finds that standard explanations cannot account for these inter-regional paradoxes, particularly the ones related to undernourishment and childhood undernutrition. The paper suggests that measurement issues related to the way undernourishment and childhood undernutrition are measured might play a significant role in affecting these inter-regional puzzles, and points to implications for research and policy.