Poverty and Prosperity

//Poverty and Prosperity

How we can use tech to help lift people out of poverty

"Tech Companies Should Stop Pretending AI Won't Destroy Jobs." "The Tech Solutions to End Global Hunger." Depending on which headline you read, you can get a very different idea of how technology is going to affect our future. It's enough to make your head spin. Neither extreme scenario rings true based on historical evidence or

Could this be the start of the end of world poverty?

Three years ago the world lined up behind an ambitious set of targets – the sustainable development goals – for 2030. The checklist included the eradication of extreme poverty, ending preventable child deaths and delivering quality universal education. As part of the pledge, governments committed to achieving the most rapid progress among populations left furthest behind. To

To End Poverty, Increase Access to Energy

The goal of alleviating global poverty is not controversial. Poverty creates terrible human suffering and wasted human potential, and it’s urgent that we find solutions. Some solutions are obvious and widely popular, such as vaccines, free primary schooling and better nutrition. But we have also come to understand that energy is among the most important

As global poverty declines, we should beware the new class wars

Half the world is now middle class. So ran the headlines reporting a Brookings Institution analysis of global poverty, according to which 3.8 billion people can now be defined as “middle class” or “rich”. We have, Brookings suggested, reached a “global tipping point”. Economic development, in China and India in particular, has helped pull millions out of poverty,

Progress in fighting poverty in America has slowed despite recent economic recovery

Poverty might mean different things in different parts of the world and to different people, but it is largely defined as being unable to afford a minimum standard of living. The United States has come a long way in addressing the problem, but progress seems to have slowed despite the recent years of economic recovery.

The Power of Families: From Poverty to Agency to Unity

Power without love is reckless and abusive, and love without power is sentimental and anemic. Power at its best is love implementing the demands of justice, and justice at its best is power correcting everything that stands against love.—Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. At this unprecedented time of injustice in the United States, what does “power” mean for low-income families? How can a national

How Rising Inequality Has Widened the Justice Gap

Rising inequality has harmed low-income families not only by depriving them of a fair share of society’s income growth, but also in a more specific way: It has stacked the legal system even more heavily against them. According to a recent survey, more than 70 percent of low-income American households had been involved in eviction cases, labor

Philadelphia’s Poor: Experiences From Below the Poverty Line

By many measures, Philadelphia is on an upswing, with a growing population, an influx of new investment, and rising household incomes. Yet at the same time, a significant share of the city’s residents are struggling. More than a quarter—about 400,000 people—live below the poverty line, which is about $19,700 a year for an adult with

2018-09-27T09:09:46+00:00 Tags: |

China’s Racing to the Top in Income Inequality

During China’s greatest period of economic growth, fed by widespread industrialization that lifted millions out of poverty, inequality has also increased — at the fastest pace and to the highest level in the world. It may get worse. China’s Gini coefficient, 1 a widely used measure of income dispersion across a population, has risen more steeply over the last decade than

Drone photos capture the staggering inequality in Mumbai

Mumbai’s startling inequality presents itself in a variety of ways. It is visible when driving down the busy roads and from the windows of its suburban trains—swanky high-rises often stand in proximity to a sprawling network of shanties. But the clearest view of the disparity comes from up in the sky. It was from this

How the Financial Crisis Drastically Increased Wealth Inequality in the U.S.

We live in unequal times. The causes and consequences of widening disparities in income and wealth have become a defining debate of our age. Researchers have made major inroads into documenting trends in either income or wealth inequality in the United States, but we still know little about how the two evolve together — an important question to

World Bank reports slower progress on extreme poverty

The war in Syria and a population surge in sub-Saharan Africa have undermined efforts to reduce the number of people living in extreme poverty, the World Bank has said. In its annual report, the Washington-based development agency said the proportion of people living in such conditions had fallen to a new low of 10% in 2015 –

This Chart Shows Social Security’s Growing Inequality Problem

For millions of Americans Social Security represents an economic safety net. Yet recent research shows its benefits are tilting more and more in favor of the wealthiest retirees. And it’s due to how long we live. According to new analysis from the Center for Retirement Research at Boston College, big gains in life expectancy among the

Carmen Porco Chair in Sustainable Business at Center on Business and Poverty

Madison, WI – September 2018 -- Rev. Dr. Carmen Porco is President of Porco Consulting and CEO of Housing Ministries of American Baptists in Wisconsin. Carmen has successfully brought six low-income housing communities out of default to become models of effectiveness: strong, stable, and vibrant communities that add significant value to the larger communities surrounding

Behind the numbers: Millions seeking a path out of poverty

Today, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that 39.7 million Americans experienced poverty last year – statistically the same as last year. In order to effectively craft policies to combat poverty, we need to know exactly who is poor – not just whether their pre-tax income falls below a given number.  Millions of Americans – including children and

Explaining US income inequality by household demographics, 2017 update

The Census Bureau released its annual report yesterday on “Income and Poverty in the United States” with lots of newly updated data on household income and household demographics. Based on those new data, I present my annual post titled “Explaining Income Inequality by Household Demographics” (see my previous versions of this analysis for years 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016). Most

50 years of rising income inequality has created a ‘new gilded age’ in the US

Reactions to the Great Recession like the Occupy Wall Street movement brought to national attention just how massive the wealth gap in the United States had become. Even as the economy recovered, the gap between the top 1% of earners and the rest of the population has continued to increase. This is according to an extensive

The share of bankruptcy filers who are older than 65 is the highest it’s ever been

The share of bankruptcy filers who are older than 65 is the highest it’s ever been.As the cost of living outpaces incomes, health-care costs rise and debt swells, there’s been more than a twofold increase in the rate of older Americans filing for bankruptcy, according to a new study. “For an increasing number of older Americans,

40 percent of adults can’t pay for their basic needs

Federal and state policymakers are weighing changes to federal programs that help low-income people meet their basic needs for food, medical care, and shelter. As policymakers consider these changes to the public safety net, they run the risk of increasing material hardship, which could have detrimental short- and long-term impacts on children and adults. How

A Strategy for Alleviating Poverty

When most people speak of place-based efforts to alleviate poverty, their definition is the same one used for the last half century—ever since the Ford Foundation undertook its 1964 Gray Areas Project and the federal government launched its corresponding Community Action Program. They envision a multi-year initiative focused on a small, distressed neighborhood. Sometimes the