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Determinants of urban poverty: the case of Debre Markos


The heterogeneity of urban poverty in a country is attributed to the high monetization of economies. Unlike in rural areas, urban poverty is reflected at an individual rather than communal level. Accordingly, poverty in such context is usually described in terms of income, consumption level, and employment. In Ethiopia the challenge of urban poverty has become daunting. However, analytical works that scrutinize urban poverty profile in the country in general and in medium towns in particular are at best scanty.
In light of this the study assessed determinants of urban poverty in Debre Markos town. Data to carry out the study came from surveys conducted in the year 2006. A total of 260 household heads were selected by a systematic random sampling from six Kebeles: Kebele 01, 03, 04, 05, 08, and 12 of the town.
A Logistic regression model was employed and estimated based on the primary data with the probability of a household being poor as a dependent variable and a set of demographic and socioeconomic variables as the explanatory parameters. By making use of Cost of Basic Needs (CBN) approach the study identified respondents as poor and non-poor. Based on this, out of the 260 surveyed household heads, 172(66%) of them were found poor. The study obtained the head count, poverty gap, and severity index 0.66, 0.21 and 0.09 respectively.
The variables that are positively correlated with the probability of being poor are: sex, household size, and health status of the household. Variables negatively correlated with the probability of being poor are: income, educational level, marital status, employment, age, housing tenure, water source, electricity connection and telephone service. Variables which affected significantly incidence of poverty at 99% confidence interval are: average monthly income, family size, educational level, and health status of the households where as sex, age, marital status, water source, housing, telephone service, and electric connection were found statistically insignificant indicators of urban poverty.
That incidence of poverty is rampant among the surveyed households- 0.66 the head count ratio, 0.21 poverty gap, and 0.09 the severity index in the town respectively calls for urgent interventions aimed at curbing the fate of the poor

Corporate Author: 
Getnet Alemu and Edilegnaw Wale (Editor) & Ethiopian Economic Association/Ethiopian Economic Policy Research Institute
Ethiopian Economic Association (EEA)
Primary Descriptors: 

poverty, urban

Geographic Descriptors: 
Ethiopia, Debre Markos
Cataloge Date: 
Broad Subject heading: 
Social Sector - Poverty
Call Number: 
330.963 PRO 2009
Serial Key Title: 
Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on the Ethiopian Economy
Publication catagory: 
Content type: 
Publication date: 
2013-12-27 23:09:00
Forum or Discussion date: 
2013-02-27 15:02:12
Place of publication: 
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Type of material: 
Current frequency: