Urbanization and Poverty Reduction -- the Role of Rural Diversification and Secondary Towns

37 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2016

See all articles by Luc Christiaensen

Luc Christiaensen

World Bank

Joachim De Weerdt

University of Antwerp - Institute of Development Policy and Management; KU Leuven - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance (LICOS); Economic Development Initiatives (EDI)

Yasuyuki Todo

Waseda University

Date Written: April 1, 2013

Abstract

A rather unique panel tracking more than 3,300 individuals from households in rural Kagera, Tanzania during 1991/4-2010 shows that about one in two individuals/households who exited poverty did so by transitioning from agriculture into the rural nonfarm economy or secondary towns. Only one in seven exited poverty by migrating to a large city, although those moving to a city experienced on average faster consumption growth. Further analysis of a much larger cross-country panel of 51 developing countries cannot reject that rural diversification and secondary town development lead to more inclusive growth patterns than metropolitization. Indications are that this follows because more of the poor find their way to the rural nonfarm economy and secondary towns, than to distant cities. The development discourse would benefit from shifting beyond the rural-urban dichotomy and focusing instead more on how best to urbanize and develop the rural nonfarm economy and secondary towns.

Keywords: Rural Poverty Reduction, Regional Economic Development, Achieving Shared Growth, Population Policies

Suggested Citation

Christiaensen, Luc and De Weerdt, Joachim and Todo, Yasuyuki, Urbanization and Poverty Reduction -- the Role of Rural Diversification and Secondary Towns (April 1, 2013). World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 6422. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2255887

Luc Christiaensen (Contact Author)

World Bank ( email )

1818 H Street, N.W.
Washington, DC 20433
United States

Joachim De Weerdt

University of Antwerp - Institute of Development Policy and Management ( email )

City campus building S
Lange Sint Annastraat 7
Antwerp, 2000
Belgium

KU Leuven - Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance (LICOS) ( email )

Waaistraat 6 - box 3511
Leuven, 3000
Belgium

Economic Development Initiatives (EDI) ( email )

P.O. Box 393
Bukoba
Tanzania

HOME PAGE: http://www.edi-africa.com

Yasuyuki Todo

Waseda University ( email )

1-104 Totsukamachi, Shinjuku-ku
tokyo, 169-8050
Japan

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