Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2020 released

The 2020 Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) data and publication “Charting pathways out of multidimensional poverty: Achieving the SDGs” released on 16 July 2020 by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative at the University of Oxford and the Human Development Report Office of the United Nations Development Programme. The index with its information on both the level and composition of poverty – provides the data needed to pinpoint where and how poverty manifests itself. Therefore, it will incite action in solidarity with the poor, so that nations like India can ‘build better’.

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What is Global Multidimensional Poverty Index?

The global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) measures the complexities of poor people’s lives, individually and collectively, each year. This report focuses on how multidimensional poverty has declined. It provides a comprehensive picture of global trends in multidimensional poverty, covering 5 billion people. It probes patterns between and within countries and by indicator, showcasing different ways of making progress. Together with data on the $1.90 a day poverty rate, the trends monitor global poverty in different forms.

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Indian Scenario:

The United Nations’ “The Global Multidimensional Poverty Index(MPI) 2020: Charting pathways out of multidimensional poverty: Achieving the SDGs” states that India records the largest reduction in the number of People living in poverty as around 273 million people moved out of the multidimensional poverty over 10 years (2005/2006 – 2015/2016). The information related to the 273 million people moving out of poverty in India was based on the population data from the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA).

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Features of the Report:

  • The data of the reports shows that out of 75 countries studied, 65 countries have reduced multidimensional poverty levels between 2000 and 2019.
  • Among the 65 countries, 50 countries have reduced the number of people living in poverty.
  • Children show higher rates of multidimensional poverty: half of multidimensionally poor people (644 million) are children under age 18. One in three children is poor compared with one in six adults.
  • About 84.3 percent of multidimensionally poor people live in Sub-Saharan Africa (558 million) and South Asia (530 million).
  • 67% of multidimensionally poor people are in middle-income countries.
  • Every multidimensionally poor person is being left behind in a critical mass of indicators. For example, 803 million multidimensionally poor people live in a household where someone is undernourished, 476 million have an out-of-school child at home, 1.2 billion lack access to clean cooking fuel, 687 million lack electricity and 1.03 billion have substandard housing materials.
  • Sustainable Development Goals: The index emphasises on measuring and monitoring progress under the goals to reach ‘zero poverty by 2030-Goal 1 of the SDGs’.

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Impacts of COVID-19:

The COVID-19 pandemic unfolded in the midst of this analysis. While data are not yet available to measure the rise of global poverty after the pandemic, simulations based on different scenarios suggest that, if unaddressed, progress across 70 developing countries could be set back 3–10 years. Around 50% of the 1.3 billion (644 million) are under the age of 18, and 107 million are 60 or above 60 who are vulnerable to COVID-19.

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