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Counting the PoorNew Thinking About European Poverty Measures and Lessons for the United States$
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Douglas J. Besharov and Kenneth A. Couch

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199860586

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199860586.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 27 October 2021

Anomalies in European Measures of Poverty and Social Exclusion

Anomalies in European Measures of Poverty and Social Exclusion

(p.389) 18 Anomalies in European Measures of Poverty and Social Exclusion
Counting the Poor

Neil Gilbert

Oxford University Press

This chapter questions the usefulness of the measures of material deprivation chosen by the EU as part of their portfolio of social indicators. It argues that although these income-based measures generate social indicators that are concrete, plausible, and convenient to use, they fail to convey the experiential quality of poverty as a condition of life—living hungry, cold, unable to meet normal social expectations, and in dread of what the future holds. They also overlook the possession of other resources and sources of support that can alleviate the conditions of poverty.

Keywords:   European Union, material deprivation, social indicators, income-based poverty

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