Monetary Poverty Indicators in Feminist Research: Overview and Outlook

By Irène Berthonnet, James Tovey

Feminist criticism has now extensively documented how the official monetary poverty indicators—the World Bank’s International Poverty Line and Eurostat’s at-risk-of-poverty rate—underestimate the poverty of women. This article reviews two alternative monetary poverty indicators introduced by feminist research. A discussion of these indicators highlights their contribution to general thinking on ways of quantifying monetary poverty without underestimating the poverty of women. More specifically, feminist research on these indicators systematically shows that to accurately measure poverty, even in strictly monetary terms, it is impossible not to take account of the power relations within households. To address this issue, two avenues of research are proposed for devising a new indicator of monetary poverty.

  • monetary poverty
  • income
  • indicators
  • household
  • feminism
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