impoverished child Thomas Trutschel | Getty Images

Armut jenseits der Zahlen

ASUNCION – Was genau ist Armut? Jahrzehnte lang haben wir sie anhand einer Zahl erklärt, die die Weltbank im Moment bei einem persönlichen Einkommen von weniger als 1,90 US-Dollar pro Tag angibt. Aber eine einzige Zahl kann nicht die Komplexität von Armut erfassen. Es ist unbedingt erforderlich, mehr als nur das Einkommen zu berücksichtigen, wenn wir die Bedürfnisse von armen Menschen verstehen und optimale Hilfe leisten wollen.

Beim Frühjahrstreffen der Weltbank in Washington in der nächsten Woche haben wir die Gelegenheit, Benchmarks wie die Sozial- und Umeltdimensionen von Armut festzulegen. Die Bank hat bereits eingeräumt, dass mehr als nur das Einkommen berücksichtigt werden sollte und vor kurzem eine Kommission zur globalen Armut eingerichtet, die zusätzliche Indikatoren empfehlen soll.

Obwohl viele öffentliche und private Gruppen bereits Daten zu verschiedenen Themen sammeln, die arme Gemeinschaften betreffen, wie Ernährung, Müttergesundheit oder Zugang zu Bildung, bleiben diese Informationen doch größtenteils ungenutzt und werden nur selten institutionsübergreifend geteilt. Aber es gibt einige Lichtblicke wie zum Beispiel den Sozialfortschrittsindex, der einen Rahmen für die Verfolgung verschiedenster Armutssymptome in vielen Ländern bietet, und der damit herkömmliche, einkommensbasierte Maßnahmen ergänzt.

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