Disability and Poverty: A Survey of World Bank Poverty Assessments and Implications

In this paper the authors survey the World Bank poverty assessment literature to date on the relationship between disability and poverty.The authors find that using standard assumptions about the distribution of household consumption among household members and the typical way that poverty lines are set in World Bank poverty assessments, this relationship may not appear to be as quantitatively significant as common sense and anecdotal evidence would suggest.Their assessment is limited by the fact that household surveys which are used by the Bank to determine consumption and consumption-based poverty typically do not include any questions about the disability status of household members. Only in one region of the Bank's work, Europe and Central Asia, do the authors find poverty assessments with numeric poverty rates for households with disabled members. Other poverty assessments done in other regions of the Bank, in some cases, do provide data on disabled people in regard to employment, health, social assistance, or a related subject, but do not provide poverty rates per se. This literature is assessed in this work, and directions for further research the authors will undertake are indicated.