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UNDERSTANDING POVERTY

We face big challenges to help the world’s poorest people and ensure that everyone sees benefits from economic growth. Data and research help us understand these challenges and set priorities, share knowledge of what works, and measure progress.

Open Data

Free and open access to global development data

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For almost 25 years, extreme poverty was steadily declining. Now, for the first time in a generation, the quest to end poverty has suffered its worst setback. This setback is largely due to major challenges — COVID 19, conflict, and climate change — facing all countries, but in particular those with large poor populations. The increase in extreme poverty from 2019 to 2020 is projected to be larger than any time since the World Bank started tracking poverty globally in a consistent manner. While COVID-19 is a new obstacle, conflicts and climate change have been increasing extreme poverty for years in parts of the world. Explore Data

Research and Publications

Analysis and advice for developing countries.

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Climate Change

Without urgent action, climate change impacts could push an additional 100 million people into poverty by 2030.

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Energy

Access to energy is essential to reduce poverty. Globally, 1.1 billion people still do not have access to electricity.

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Fragility, Conflict and Violence

The challenge of fragility, conflict, and violence is widespread, and not confined to low-income countries.

Two women conduct a financial transaction with a mobile phone and card © World Bank

Financial Inclusion

Around 2 billion people don’t use formal financial services, including more than 50% of adults in the poorest households. Financial inclusion is a key to reducing poverty and boosting prosperity.