'Too Young to Die'. Deprivation Measures Combining Poverty and Premature Mortality

54 Pages Posted: 23 Oct 2019

See all articles by Jean-Marie Baland

Jean-Marie Baland

University of Namur

Guilhem Cassan

University of Namur

Benoit Decerf

Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE)

Date Written: October 2019

Abstract

Most measures of deprivation concentrate on deprivation among the living population and, thus, ignore premature mortality. This omission leads to a severe bias in the evaluation of deprivation. We propose three different measures that combine information on poverty and premature mortality of a population in a meaningful manner. These indices are consistent and satisfy a number of desirable properties unmet by all other measures combining early mortality and poverty. Moreover, these measures are readily computable with available data and easily interpretable. We show that omitting premature mortality leads to an underestimation of total deprivation in 2014 of at least 30% at the world level. We also show that the ranking in terms of deprivation of countries is substantially changed with our measures, and that our understanding of the evolution of countries' deprivation may be reversed when taking premature mortality into account.

Keywords: Composite Indices, Deprivation Measurement, Premature Mortality

JEL Classification: D63, I32, O15

Suggested Citation

Baland, Jean-Marie and Cassan, Guilhem and Decerf, Benoit, 'Too Young to Die'. Deprivation Measures Combining Poverty and Premature Mortality (October 2019). CEPR Discussion Paper No. DP14059, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3474431

Jean-Marie Baland (Contact Author)

University of Namur ( email )

8 rempart de la vierge
Namur, 5000
Belgium

Guilhem Cassan

University of Namur ( email )

No Address Available

Benoit Decerf

Catholic University of Louvain (UCL) - Center for Operations Research and Econometrics (CORE) ( email )

34 Voie du Roman Pays
B-1348 Louvain-la-Neuve, b-1348
Belgium

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