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Poverty Toolbox

Sida has collected experiences and developed concrete tools to support the goal of a sharper poverty focus in Sida’s operations in the Poverty Toolbox.

The Toolbox provides guidance on how to analyse multidimensional poverty, as well as a library with some of the multidimensional poverty analyses that Sida has developed.

There are documents that show how different thematic areas and perspectives that Sida works with are related to multidimensional poverty. Other tools give support to basing operational decisions on knowledge about multidimensional poverty.

Multidimensional poverty according to Sida

Sida identifies four dimensions of poverty:

  • Resources. Including money, literacy, food, water and sanitation, professional skills, good health, tools or land.
  • Opportunities and choice. Access to education, healthcare, infrastructure, energy, markets and information, productive employment.
  • Power and voice. Ability to exercise one’s human rights, to articulate concerns and needs, to take part in decision-making. Requires knowledge, access to information and participation on equal terms.
  • Human security. When physical, psychological or sexual violence - or threats thereof - affects life.

There are many underlying causes of poverty, such as weak democratic institutions, a lack of jobs, armed conflict or the effects of climate change. This context is often outside of the influence of people living in poverty, but it frames the set of choices and opportunities available to them. Sida analyses four development contexts:

  • political and institutional context
  • economic and social context
  • environmental context
  • peace and conflict context

Find out more about Sida's view of multidimensional poverty in the publication Dimensions of Poverty. This is an important starting point for our work.

There are brief summaries of Dimensions of Poverty in different languages:

Tools for Multidimensional Poverty Analysis

Analysing multidimensional poverty in a country or a region (MDPA - Multidimensional Poverty Analysis) provides insights into:

  • who is living in poverty
  • what poverty looks like for different groups
  • the main constraints for poverty reduction
  • the opportunities and constraints for reducing poverty in each context.

The conclusions from an MDPA are important points of departure for strategic decisions and relevant and efficient interventions that sustainably reduce poverty.

A set of Guiding questions support the analysis of the different dimensions of poverty and contexts and facilitate the analytical application.

Menu of indicators gathers a selection of relevant indicators to be used in the analysis.

Analysing thematic topics

Sida has developed support material for analysing different thematic topics and perspectives in the MDPA:

Examples of Multidimensional Poverty Analysis

The MDPA framework has been used by Sida to analyse the development dynamics in our partner countries. Here you find examples of how the MDPA has been applied.

Updated: 30 September 2021