The Global Social Challenge: Beyond Poverty & Inequality
Full course description
The evidence of mounting world poverty & inequality is compelling. There is a global challenge to move beyond sheer descriptions and consider holistic frameworks that can give the poor and vulnerable a sustainable access to the resources they need to be self-sufficient and to be able to contribute in their societies. And while the common perception is that, it is developing countries which experience severe poverty and/or inequality; this also extends to developed and industrialised countries. This course presents the students with a wide range of concepts, definitions, and theories of poverty and inequality. The main objective is to increase the students’ knowledge and understanding of the diversity and complexity of 1) poverty, its forms and root causes and 2) inequality and its causes. This is done in conjunction with learning the basic technical skills on how to measure poverty and inequality. Other topics that are discussed and elaborated on in the course include human development, social risks and vulnerability, patterns of economic and social development, migration as a form of social protection, morbidity patters and health, demographic developments, formal and informal labour markets, social impacts of macro-economic (fiscal, monetary) policy, global governance, and international institutions.
- Explain the translation of theory into conceptual and measurement options for poverty, inequality, and vulnerability.
- Justify the selection of poverty and inequality measures within a given context, which requires:
- Defining, comparing, and applying ways of understanding poverty measurements (uni-dimensional and multidimensional)
- Examining, justifying, and applying different simple methods of measuring inequality.
- Identify and explain more complex inequality and mobility measurement methods
- Appraise, negotiate, advocate, and recommend policy options relating to poverty reduction strategies for duty bearers.
- Deneulin, S., & Shahani, L. (2009). An introduction to the human development and capability approach: Freedom and agency. Earthscan.
- Haughton, J., & Khandker, S. R. (2009). Handbook on Poverty and Inequality. Washington D.C.: World Bank Publications.