Poverty and Inequality

January 5, 2022

The Poverty and Inequality Research Program has two main objectives: (1) improve current data as well as methods and tools for poverty and inequality analysis and (2) use the improved data and existing data sources to better understand the economic and social processes determining the extent of poverty and inequality and to assess the effectiveness of specific policies in reducing poverty.

  • A Laboratory technician at a hospital. Photo: © Tariq siddiq Kohistani/Shutterstock

    COVID-19: Costs, Consequences, and Urgent Choices

    Research Newsletter, July 2021
    This COVID-19 newsletter focuses on the costs, consequences, and urgent choices as COVID-19 continues to devastate lives and livelihoods. It includes research on the costs of the pandemic, the efficacy of government responses, and the promise of vaccines to slow and eventually halt the pandemic.
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    Poverty and Shared Prosperity 2020: Reversals of Fortune

    October 2020
    The report presents new estimates of COVID-19’s impacts on global poverty and inequality. Harnessing fresh data from frontline surveys and economic simulations, it shows that pandemic-related job losses and deprivation worldwide are hitting already-poor and vulnerable people hard, while also partly changing the profile of global poverty by creating millions of “new poor.” Furthermore, the report breaks ground by jointly analyzing three factors whose convergence is driving the current crisis and will extend its impact into the future: the COVID-19 pandemic, armed conflict, and climate change.
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    Violence without Borders: The Internationalization of Crime and Conflict

    June 2020
    This Policy Research Report documents how permeable country borders have become in many different domains, and the troubling human and economic costs as the geographical spillovers of conflict and crime and political instability have intensified. The report suggests international institutions can play a critical role in stabilizing domestic fragility by moving settlement of disputes away from battlefields and toward global platforms.


Transnational Terrorism and the Internet
Quy-Toan Do, Nicolas Gomez-Parra, Bob Rijkers
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 9885, December 2021

A Puzzle with Missing Pieces: Explaining the Effectiveness of World Bank Development Projects
Louise Ashton, Jed Friedman, Diana Goldemberg, Mustafa Zakir Hussain, Thomas Kenyon, Akib Khan, Mo Zhou
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 9884, December 2021

Taxation, Accountability, and Cash Transfers: Breaking the Resource Curse
Shantayanan Devarajan, Quy-Toan Do
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 9880, December 2021

In Someone Else’s Shoes: Promoting Prosocial Behavior Through Perspective Taking
Marisol Rodríguez Chatruc, Sandra V. Rozo
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 9866, November 2021

Does Race and Gender Inequality Impact Income Growth?
Gustavo A. Marrero, Juan Gabriel Rodríguez, Roy van der Weide
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 9865, November 2021

Fair and Welfare-Consistent Global Income Poverty Measurement: Theory and Application
Benoit Decerf, Mery Ferrando, Natalie N. Quinn
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper 9844, November 2021

More Working Papers


Children on the move: Progressive redistribution of humanitarian cash transfers among refugees
Berk Özler, Çiğdem Çelika, Scott Cunningham, P. Facundo Cuevasa, Luca Parisottoa
Journal of Development Economics 153: 102733, November 2021 | Working Paper Version

Too Young to Die: Deprivation Measures Combining Poverty and Premature Mortality
Jean-Marie Baland, Guilhem Cassan, Benoit Decerf
American Economic Journal: Applied Economics 13 (4): 226-57, October 2021

Lives and livelihoods: Estimates of the global mortality and poverty effects of the Covid-19 pandemic
Benoit Decerf, Francisco H. G. Ferreira, Daniel G.Mahler, Olivier Sterck
World Development 146: 105561, October 2021 | Working Paper Version | Blog

Disruptions in maternal and child health service utilization during COVID-19: analysis from eight sub-Saharan African countries
Gil Shapira, Tashrik Ahmed, Salomé Henriette Paulette Drouard, Pablo Amor Fernandez, Eeshani Kandpal, Charles Nzelu, Chea Sanford Wesseh, Nur Ali Mohamud, Francis Smart, Charles Mwansambo, Martina L Baye, Mamatou Diabate, Sylvain Yuma, Munirat Ogunlayi, Rwema Jean De Dieu Rusatira, Tawab Hashemi, Petra Vergeer, Jed Friedman
Health Policy and Planning 36(7): 1140–1151, August 2021


Are our neighbors really that nosy? Investigating local welfare information in small, rural communities in Central Java
Guest Post by Carly Trachtman | Development Impact |November 18, 2021

Does providing job opportunities to women decrease the violence they face from their partners? Evidence from the Rwandan Coffee Mills
Guest Post by Deniz Sanin | Development Impact | November 19, 2021

Where and when is community-driven development (CDD) effective?
Marcus Holmlund, Vijayendra Rao | Development Impact | October 27, 2021

The journey of a matching paper
Berk Özler
| Development Impact | October 12, 2021

Development Research Group (DRG) Development Impact Evaluation (DIME) are hiring
Berk Özler, Florence Kondylis | Development Impact | October 25, 2021

Do migrants affect the domestic economy? Evidence from Colombia
Sandra Rozo | VoxDev, October 1, 2021

Tips for collecting surveys of hard-to-reach populations
Sandra V. Rozo | Development Impact | July 14, 2021

How to assess the costs and benefits of lockdowns
The Economist | June 29, 2021 | Working Paper Cited



Katy Ann Bergstrom

Quy-Toan Do
Senior Economist

Jed Friedman
Senior Economist

Emanuela Galasso
Senior Economist

Eeshani Kandpal

Berk Ozler
Lead Economist | Manager

Vijayendra Rao
Lead Economist

Sandra Rozo

Roy van der Weide
Senior Economist

Michael Woolcock
Lead Social Scientist



PovcalNet: Poverty Monitoring Tool

Seminar Series

Development Research Group

Development Impact Blog