Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI ) 2022 – UPSC Notes

The ‘Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI)‘ and ‘United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)‘ release the “Global Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI)” annually. The index is an international resource which measures acute multidimensional poverty across more than 100 developing nations. First launched in 2010, the Global MPI advances ‘Sustainable Development Goal 1‘, holding the world accountable for its resolution to end poverty in all its forms everywhere.

About Global MPI 2022

The Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2022 was published on 17 October 2022 by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI) and the Human Development Report Office of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP).

This year’s report title is “Global Multidimensional Poverty Index 2022: Unpacking deprivation bundles to reduce multidimensional poverty“.

The Global MPI 2022 compares acute multidimensional poverty for 111 countries in developing regions.

The 2022 index shows both who is poor (in terms of their age group, subnational region, and whether they live in urban or rural areas) and how they are poor (which overlapping deprivations they face and how many deprivations they have).

The Global MPI 2022 examines interlinkages or the simultaneous interlinked deprivations that multidimensional poor people face around the globe.

The 2022 report presents for the first time an in-depth analysis of the possible combinations (or bundles) of deprivations across ten indicators measured in Global MPI.

The 2022 Global MPI identifies a series of ‘deprivation bundles’ (recurring patterns of poverty) that commonly impact those who live in multidimensional poverty across the world.

The analysis investigates which interlinked deprivations are most frequent and where and how to address these deprivations with multisectoral approaches to poverty reduction.

Dimensions and Indicators

Health• Nutrition
• Child mortality
Education• Years of schooling
• School attendance
Standard of Living• Cooking fuel
• Sanitation
• Drinking water
• Housing
• Electricity
• Assets

Key Highlights of the Global MPI 2022

Global Data

  • The Global MPI 2022 covers 111 countries in developing regions. These countries are home to 6.1 billion people, i.e., three-quarters of the world’s population. Across these 111 countries, 1.2 billion people (19.1%) live in acute multidimensional poverty. Half of these people (593 million) are children under the age of 18 years.
  • The report shows that across developing regions, the Largest number of poor people live in Sub-Saharan Africa (nearly 579 million), followed by South Asia (385 million). The two regions together are home to 83% of the poor people.
  • For the first time since the Global MPI was introduced, the number of poor people in Sub-Saharan Africa is larger than the combined number for South Asia and East Asia and the Pacific (494 million).
  • Nearly 83% (964 million) of poor people live in rural areas, and 17% (198 million) live in urban areas.
  • More than 66% of poor people live in middle-income countries, where the ‘incidence of poverty’ ranges from 0.1% to 66.8% nationally and from 0.0% to 89.5% sub-nationally.
  • Nearly half of poor people (518 million) live in severe poverty, meaning their deprivation score is 50% or higher.
  • One in six poor people lives in a female-headed household.
  • Of the 81 countries with trend data covering roughly 5 billion people, 72 countries experienced a statistically significant reduction in absolute terms in MPI value during at least one period.
  • Between the two most recent surveys, the Central African Republic and Guinea experienced an increase in MPI value.
  • Some 26 nations experienced a statistically significant drop in every indicator. Three of these countries (India, Honduras, and the Plurinational State of Bolivia) saw reductions in all indicators over two periods.
  • In 40 countries, there was either no statistically significant reduction in poverty among children or the MPI value dropped more slowly among children than among adults during at least one period.
  • In some countries, sub-national regions that were initially among the poorest in their country reduced poverty faster in absolute terms than the national average, narrowing the poverty gap. These include
    • Intibucá in Honduras (2011/2012-2019),
    • Bihar, Jharkhand, Uttar Pradesh in India (2015/2016-2019/2021),
    • East and South in Rwanda (2014/2015-2019/2020),
    • Mekong River Delta in Vietnam (2013/2014-2020/2021).

Pandemic Effects

Simulations in 2020 suggested that the COVID-19 pandemic had set progress in reducing Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) values back by 3-10 years. Updated data indicate that the setback at the global level is likely to be on the high end of those projections.


Identifying the overlaps between poverty indicators (i.e., when deprivations affect the same person or household simultaneously) can make the MPI a precise policy tool. The report shows more than 850 possible combinations of 10 deprivations measured in the Global MPI.

  • The most common deprivation profile, affecting 3.9% of poor people, includes deprivations in four indicators: nutrition, sanitation, housing, and cooking fuel. In only these four indicators, over 45.5 million poor people are deprived. Of those people, 34.4 million live in India, 2.1 million in Bangladesh, and 1.9 million in Pakistan, making this a predominantly South Asian profile.
  • The second most common deprivation profile includes the six Standard of Living indicators. Almost 41 million poor people have this profile. It is the most common profile in Sub-Saharan Africa, accounting for 5.9% (34.2 million) of poor people.
  • Globally, 4.1 million poor people are deprived in all 10 MPI indicators.

Key Findings about India

The Global MPI 2022 shows the significant poverty reductions in India, which shows how SDG Target 1.2 is possible. (SDG Target 1.2 is “to reduce at least by half the proportion of men, women, and children of all ages living in poverty in all its dimensions by 2030”).

  • In India, 415 million people escaped poverty between 2005/2006 and 2019/2021, including about 140 million since 2015/2016.
  • India’s MPI value and incidence of poverty were both more than halved.
    • The MPI value fell from 0.283 in 2005/2006 to 0.122 in 2015/2016 to 0.069 in 2019/2020.
    • The incidence of poverty fell from 55.1% in 2005/2006 to 27.7% in 2015/2016 to 16.4% in 2019/2021.
  • The percentage of poor people is 21.2% in rural areas compared with 5.5% in urban areas. Rural areas account for nearly 90% of poor people (of the 229 million poor people, 205 million live in rural areas).
  • More than one in five children in India are poor (21.8%) compared with around one in seven adults (13.9%).
  • Children, the poorest age group, saw the fastest reduction in MPI value from 2005/2006 to 2015/2016 in India. The incidence of poverty dropped from 34.7% to 21.8% among children and from 24% to 13.9% among adults.

Call to Action

The Global MPI 2022 issues a call to action to improve the quality and frequency of data collection to ensure better-informed poverty reduction policies and advocates for:

  • Devoting funding to ensure the continuation and greater frequency of multitopic household surveys that can be used to estimate multidimensional poverty.
  • Supporting capacity building for national statistics offers to gather high-quality poverty data with extensive disaggregation and to cover left-behind groups.
  • Including new modules to address missing data on vital topics for poverty, such as work (including information work), physical insecurity, and household health.

Source: OPHI and UNDP

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