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An Example Of A Research Paper About Poverty In The World

In economic terms, poverty is an extreme condition where the basic needs of people like food, clothing, and shelter are not fulfilled. Poverty can be also be seen as a relative condition where people are not enjoying a minimum standard of living, which is referred to as the poverty line. The new poverty line is $1.25 a day.


World Bank reports of 2008 state that “around 1.4 billion people live on or below poverty line. Over three billion people (which is almost half the world population) live on less than $2.50 a day. Almost 80% of human population lives on less than $10 a day”.


The causes of poverty


There are few causes for poverty –

  1. Local causes:
  2. Lack of food production: This can be due to natural reasons like draught, famine, flood or pest infestations. A lack of a food reserve or control over food distribution also adds to the situation.

    Natural disasters: Disasters of large scale can influence the agriculture and food production. Storms, earthquakes have a devastating and long term effect on the economy of a region.

    Epidemics or diseases: An epidemic can cause poverty as it affects the health of the population.

    Strife, conflicts or violence: Local conflicts can be for religious, political or cultural reasons. Large scale or long lasting conflicts have devastating effect on the people.


  3. Global causes:
  4. Debt repayment: Many third world countries depend on the richer and powerful countries. Debts can be in various forms and repayment policies which sometimes are hard to fulfill.

    Structural Adjustment Policies (SAPs): These policies are imposed on the debt ridden countries to ensure debt repayment. They imply economic restructuring and reforms and often reduce spending on health, education and development activities.

    Corruption: It has become a global concern and is very inter-related with other issues. A corruption at a local level is perceived but at a larger level they are hidden. It affects things like ‘free trade agreements’, ‘SAPs’, ‘unequal trade agreements’ and impacts long term development and poverty.


  5. Historical causes:
  6. Conquests, colonization and slavery: until the middle of the last century, countries were colonized. This drained their resources, put a burden of debt and ensured a cycle of poverty on them. Slavery was another form of draining human resources.

According to UNICEF, “22,000 children die each day due to poverty”. This is an optimistic number as they die silently in some desolate corner, away from the attention of the world. The situation is desperate. This is in spite of the fact that lot of effort have already been put in to eradicate poverty.


The situation has improved but eradication requires a more concerted effort from all concerned. An important goal has been set by the United Nations through UNDP to eradicate extreme poverty by the year 2030. The program also aims to ensure that by 2030 all men and women “have equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to basic services”. Let us all join hands and resources to that effort.

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