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Multidimensional child poverty

SDG 1 calls for the eradication of poverty, in all its forms, for every man, woman and child.

Children don’t control income, and they depend on the adults in their life to fulfill their needs. Children’s needs also change rapidly: a 3-year-old’s needs are quite different from those of an 8-year-old. This impacts heavily on the way poverty is experienced by children, even among children within the same household.

A multidimensional approach to child poverty is an essential complement to standard monetary poverty measurement. Research on multidimensional poverty aims to measure the actual access of children to goods and services that are fundamental for their full development and essential for the fulfillment of their rights under the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (MODA) is a tool developed at UNICEF Innocenti that measures and defines multidimensional child poverty, based on the CRC. It allows us to gain a clearer picture of which dimensions of poverty children are experiencing, providing enhanced analytics to guide programming and policy responses. MODA is a practical and flexible tool that allows rigorous measurement of multidimensional child poverty in different contexts, as well as in-depth monitoring of SDG target 1.2. More than 50 national studies and 3 regional studies using MODA have been produced.

MODA can act as a supportive tool in planning interventions and policies that are more effective in targeting and revealing the most deprived children. It can also provide important evidence required to plan delivery of multi-sectoral interventions through the analysis of overlaps. Finally, MODA can be adapted to critical situations such as humanitarian crises and displacement, providing us with extremely valuable information not otherwise readily available.

 

Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (MODA) can be applied using various surveys, ranging from local to international levels, such as the Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) and Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS). DHS and MICS provide suitable data on child deprivation in low- and middle-income countries. When evaluating surveys for MODA, it is important to select dimensions and indicators that are relevant in each country setting. Here is a list of common indicators in each dimension for different age groups.  These are taken from previous MODA studies that used MICS or DHS questionnaires. But the list can be adapted for use with other surveys, such as household budget or living conditions studies. See the “MODA HOW-TO Guide” for more information about how to use this approach to multidimensional child poverty analysis.

Download the MODA Brochure.

 

Multidimensional child poverty

SDG 1 calls for the eradication of poverty, in all its forms, for every man, woman and child.

Children don’t control income, and they depend on the adults in their life to fulfill their needs. Children’s needs also change rapidly: a 3-year-old’s needs are quite different from those of an 8-year-old. This impacts heavily on the way poverty is experienced by children, even among children within the same household.

A multidimensional approach to child poverty is an essential complement to standard monetary poverty measurement. Research on multidimensional poverty aims to measure the actual access of children to goods and services that are fundamental for their full development and essential for the fulfillment of their rights under the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (MODA) is a tool developed at UNICEF Innocenti that measures and defines multidimensional child poverty, based on the CRC. It allows us to gain a clearer picture of which dimensions of poverty children are experiencing, providing enhanced analytics to guide programming and policy responses. MODA is a practical and flexible tool that allows rigorous measurement of multidimensional child poverty in different contexts, as well as in-depth monitoring of SDG target 1.2. More than 50 national studies and 3 regional studies using MODA have been produced.

MODA can act as a supportive tool in planning interventions and policies that are more effective in targeting and revealing the most deprived children. It can also provide important evidence required to plan delivery of multi-sectoral interventions through the analysis of overlaps. Finally, MODA can be adapted to critical situations such as humanitarian crises and displacement, providing us with extremely valuable information not otherwise readily available.

 

Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (MODA) can be applied using various surveys, ranging from local to international levels, such as the Demographic and Health Survey (DHS) and Multiple Indicator Cluster Survey (MICS). DHS and MICS provide suitable data on child deprivation in low- and middle-income countries. When evaluating surveys for MODA, it is important to select dimensions and indicators that are relevant in each country setting. Here is a list of common indicators in each dimension for different age groups.  These are taken from previous MODA studies that used MICS or DHS questionnaires. But the list can be adapted for use with other surveys, such as household budget or living conditions studies. See the “MODA HOW-TO Guide” for more information about how to use this approach to multidimensional child poverty analysis.

Download the MODA Brochure.

 

LATEST PUBLICATIONS

This research brief compares the properties of individual- and household-based multidimensional child poverty approaches. Specifically, it contrasts UNICEF’s Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (MODA) with the Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) developed by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative. MODA focuses on children and is rooted in the child rights approach, while MPI has been developed for households and follows Sen’s (1985) capabilities approach. We demonstrate their similarities and differences using two recent Multiple Indicator Cluster Surveys: Sierra Leone and Lao People’s Democratic Republic (PDR). The analysis suggests that MODA tends to produce higher multidimensional child poverty headcount rates than MPI, both because of the differences in the survey items used to construct the indicators of deprivation and because of how the indicators are aggregated and weighted.

AUTHOR(S)

Alessandro Carraro; Yekaterina Chzhen

This paper provides a framework for analyzing constraints that apply specifically to women, which theory suggests may have negative impacts on child outcomes (as well as on women). We classify women’s constraints into four dimensions: (i) low influence on household decisions, (ii) restrictions on mobility, (iii) domestic physical and psychological abuse, and (iv) limited information access. Each of these constraints are in principle determined within households. We test the impact of women’s constraints on child outcomes using nationally representative household Demographic and Health Survey data from India, including 53,030 mothers and 113,708 children, collected in 2015-16. We examine outcomes including nutrition, health, education, water quality, and sanitation. In our primary specification, outcomes are measured as multidimensional deprivations incorporating indicators for each of these deficiencies, utilizing a version of UNICEF’s Multidimensional Overlapping Deprivation Analysis index. We identify causal impacts using a Lewbel specification and present an array of additional econometric strategies and robustness checks. We find that children of women who are subjected to domestic abuse, have low influence in decision making, and limited freedom of mobility are consistently more likely to be deprived, measured both multidimensionally and with separate indicators.

AUTHOR(S)

Alberto Posso; Stephen C. Smith; Lucia Ferrone

2018 Results Report

Innocenti Publications

2019     21 Jun 2019
In 2018, significant gains were made in generating evidence to improve the lives of the most disadvantaged children, build organizational capacity to conduct and use quality, ethical research on children, and set a foundation as an important convening centre for expert consultation on next-generation ideas on children. 2018 marks the first year the UNICEF Office of Research - Innocenti is reporting on the progress of research under the new UNICEF Strategic Plan (2018-2021). This plan is the first to clearly delineate the role of research and evidence as one of the eight priority change strategies for children. This report therefore is an account of the first year of work to generate critical evidence to inform programmes, policies and advocacy for children and young people around the world

In this paper, we provide estimates and analysis of child multidimensional poverty in Mozambique. Drawing on data from the Mozambique Household Budget Survey of 2014/15 (IOF), we define child multidimensional poverty using the Multiple Overlapping Analysis (MODA). We define three age groups of children, and a total of seven dimensions of deprivation: Family, Nutrition, Education, Child labour, Health, WASH, Participation, and Housing. Results show that 81 per cent of children are deprived in at least two dimensions. Children are especially vulnerable in rural areas, where deprivation rates reach 95 per cent, and in the provinces of Niassa, Zambezia, and Cabo Delgado. The dimensions that more frequently overlap in Mozambique are Housing, Health, and WASH, with one third of children being deprived in these three dimensions at the same time. The data also allow the analysis of the interplay between monetary and multidimensional child poverty: 46 per cent of children suffer both forms of poverty. Children who are poor and deprived are children who live in rural areas, in more remote provinces; they live in households whose heads are less educated and whose main activity is agriculture. Finally, there is a direct correlation with shocks affecting the household and multidimensional poverty, with children of families who experienced weather shocks being more likely to be poor, deprived, or both.

AUTHOR(S)

Lucia Ferrone; Andrea Rossi; Zlata Bruckauf

Fiscal incidence analysis is the most widely used methodology to assess the distributional effects of fiscal policies. However, for 40 years, it has lacked a child lens. A child focus on the redistributive capacity of fiscal policy is increasingly important due to the disproportionate incidence of poverty among children globally. This paper provides a child-dedicated focus on fiscal incidence analysis by tracking child-relevant benefits, turning children the unit of analysis, and using multidimensional child poverty metrics. The analysis—Commitment to Equity for Children, or CEQ4C—integrates three analytical frameworks, namely, public finance, fiscal incidence analysis, and multidimensional child poverty analysis. The paper develops a proof of concept for Uganda that includes measurement, diagnostics, and a policy simulation package replicable across diverse contexts. The proof of concept confirms that CEQ4C provides a higher-resolution fiscal incidence analysis for children than the traditional fiscal incidence analysis.

AUTHOR(S)

Jose Cuesta; Jon Jellema; Yekaterina Chzhen; Lucia Ferrone

Mental health is increasingly gaining the spotlight in the media and public discourse of industrialized countries. The problem is not new, but thanks to more open discussions and fading stigma, it is emerging as one of the most critical concerns of public health today. Psychological problems among children and adolescents can be wide-ranging and may include attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), disruptive conduct, anxiety, eating and mood disorders and other mental illnesses. Consistent evidence shows the links between adolescents’ mental health and the experience of bullying. Collecting internationally comparable data to measure mental health problems among children and adolescents will provide important evidence and stimulate governments to improve psychological support and services to vulnerable children.

AUTHOR(S)

Zlata Bruckauf

The new universal Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) call for “reducing at least by half the proportion of men, women and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions according to national definitions” by 2030.

AUTHOR(S)

Yekaterina Chzhen; Zlata Bruckauf; Emilia Toczydlowska

The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target 1.2 implies that both monetary and non-monetary or multidimensional (MD) child poverty would be measured and monitored, and that the associated indicators would be defined nationally. However, very few countries routinely measure child MD poverty.

AUTHOR(S)

Lisa Hjelm; Lucia Ferrone; Sudhanshu Handa; Yekaterina Chzhen

Based on nationally representative data from the Armenian Integrated Living Conditions Survey 2013/14, the study finds that 64 per cent of children under 18 are deprived in 2 or more dimensions, with a substantially higher rate in rural than in urban areas. The highest rates of deprivation are in access to utilities, quality housing and leisure activities. More than one in four children are both multidimensionally deprived and live in consumption-poor households, while more than one in three are deprived but do not live in poor households.

AUTHOR(S)

Lucia Ferrone; Yekaterina Chzhen

This study provides the first estimates of national multidimensional child deprivation rates in Bosnia and Herzegovina using the National Multiple Overlapping Deprivation Analysis (MODA) pioneered by UNICEF. Amongst the findings of the analysis, it is seen that a reduction in child poverty and deprivation may be achieved by improving both the spending power of households and the availability of services/infrastructure in local areas.

AUTHOR(S)

Yekaterina Chzhen; Lucia Ferrone

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