An end to extreme global poverty by 2030?

There is 'tremendous potential' for reducing global poverty in the immediate future, according to researchers at the Brookings Institution in Washington. But they also warn there is no magic ingredient for success, and that progress depends on a 'complex recipe' including better targeting of those in poverty.

Key points

  • Between 1990 and 2010, the share of the population of the developing world living in extreme poverty was cut in half. This fulfilled the first and foremost Millennium Development Goal five years ahead of schedule.
  • If the same rate of progress could be sustained, extreme global poverty might be eliminated altogether by 2030.
  • The immediate future offers tremendous potential for progress. With the global mode located at the poverty line, equitable growth can lift hundreds of millions more out of destitution, particularly in India.
  • But soon after that, sustaining progress will become increasingly hard – requiring action to help those standing furthest from the poverty line, and in environments where the prospects for sustained improvements in living standards are most tenuous.
  • Progress hinges on a complex recipe: better than expected consumption growth and distributional trends in favour of those in poverty; country-by-country progress in moving fragile and conflict-affected states on to a stable path; strengthening the resilience of vulnerable households and economies to other kinds of shock; the incorporation of isolated or excluded sub-national populations into the orbit of their economies; and more deliberate and efficient targeting of those in poverty, at a country and sub-national level.

Source: Laurence Chandy, Natasha Ledlie and Veronika Penciakova, The Final Countdown: Prospects for Ending Extreme Poverty by 2030, Brookings Institution (Washington, USA)