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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Do we understand the linkages between economic growth, poverty targets and poverty reduction?
Authors:Casse, Thorkil
Jensen, StigISNI
Periodical:Review of African Political Economy
Geographic terms:Africa
Burkina Faso
Subjects:economic development
poverty reduction
Abstract:This article looks at the argument for a correspondence between economic growth and poverty reduction. It questions whether a link between economic growth and poverty reduction can be established. The general picture in Africa provides no convincing evidence of this link. Two countries in Africa, Burkina Faso and Madagascar, seem on the surface to exemplify the link. However, in Burkina Faso the link exists only in a limited way and for only a short period (1998-2003), while in Madagascar, where the link appears more obvious, social and political unrest in 2009 casts doubt on the reliability of the data. Indeed, it is probable that an increase in poverty contributed to the crisis in Madagascar. Furthermore, there are signs that in both countries poverty strategies are increasingly giving way to Poverty Reduction Growth Facility programmes, closely related to former structural adjustment loans. The authors conclude that analysing poverty strategies through Poverty Reduction Strategy Papers does not help to resolve the uncertainty, since these strategies assume a priori the existence of a link between economic growth and poverty reduction. Moreover, collection and interpretation of poverty data could be biased, with the World Bank, for example, having an interest in showing improvements in poverty reduction in Africa. Finally, the paucity of data needs, at the very least, to be recognized as a major problem. Bibliogr., note, sum. [Journal abstract]