Rebuilding after war: Micro-level determinants of poverty reduction in Mozambique

Kenneth R. Simler, Sanjukta Mukherjee, Gabriel L. Dava, Gaurav Datt

Research output: Book/ReportOther ReportResearchpeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


A devastating war that lasted from the 1970s to 1992 left the people of Mozambique among the poorest in the world. Since the peace agreement was signed, the government has endeavored to rebuild the country's infrastructure and to improve living standards. Poverty reduction is the primary goal of the government, as well as nongovernmental organizations and donors operating in Mozambique; it is an essential first step to determine the true extent of poverty and where it is most severe. Toward this effort, the International Food Policy Research Institute, the Mozambique Ministry of Planning and Finance, and the Eduardo Mondlane University in Maputo, Mozambique, have jointly undertaken a large research project on the state of poverty in Mozambique. To provide a statistical basis for the research, a National Household Survey of Living Conditions, covering 8,289 households, was conducted in 1996-97 and a report was published in 1998, covering a broad range of topics including poverty, food security, education, nutrition, health, and safety nets. The present report zeroes in on the key question of what determines living standards and poverty in Mozambique, with the aim of identifying those public policy interventions that are likely to reduce poverty the most. Rather than looking at the association between poverty and various household and individual characteristics on a one-to-one basis (bivariate analysis), which often oversimplifies complex relationships and can lead to erroneous conclusions, this report uses multiple regression to analyze poverty and living standards econometrically. As methodological choices can have a strong influence on the results, much of the report is given over to a detailed discussion of the methodology used to conduct the analysis and sensitivity analysis to assess the robustness of the findings to alternative methodological choices. These include the construction of region-specific poverty lines and the empirical model of poverty determinants used. Estimates of poverty levels and the results of the model are presented, followed by simulations that indicate the impact on poverty of specific policy interventions.

Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationUSA
PublisherInternational Food Policy Research Institute
Number of pages96
ISBN (Print)0896291359
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2003
Externally publishedYes

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