2017 – Summer School

Organised by the Oxford Poverty and Human Development Initiative (OPHI), University of Oxford, was held at Sup de Co Marrakech, in Marrakesh, Morocco, 3-15 July 2017.

The purpose of this intensive summer school was to provide a thorough technical and practical introduction to multidimensional poverty measurement with a strong emphasis on the Alkire-Foster method. Upon completing the course, students gained the skills required to construct and analyse an official national multidimensional poverty measure and to describe its policy relevance. Drawing on Amartya Sen’s capability approach and empirical examples of national and global Multidimensional Poverty Indices (MPIs), the conceptual and empirical motivation for measuring multidimensional poverty was presented, as well as the full suite of measurement tools including estimation, dimensional breakdown, disaggregation by population subgroup, standard errors and statistical inference, robustness, communications, policy applications and so on.

The following topics were covered:

  • Unidimensional poverty measures;
  • Methodologies to analyse multidimensional poverty – dashboard, stochastic dominance, information theory, fuzzy set, multiple correspondence analysis, unmet basic needs and counting approaches – and the problems each methodology best solves;
  • The Alkire Foster methodology of multidimensional poverty measurement;
  • Measurement design – purpose, unit of measure, dimensions, indicators, cut-offs and weights;
  • Estimation of multidimensional poverty and interpretation of the results;
  • Subgroup decomposition and mapping;
  • Multidimensional poverty changes over time;
  • Econometric analysis of multidimensional poverty and impact evaluation;
  • Institutions, policies, and communication.

This summer school was co-organised in partnership with the Morocco High Commission for Planning (HCP) as part of pre-conference activities of the ISI World Statistics Congress 2017 held in Marrakech (Morocco) from 16 to 21 July 2017. The summer school applicants were highly encouraged to also apply and participate in the congress. Further information can be found on the conference website.

The summer school was led by OPHI Director Sabina Alkire and the OPHI team including Adriana Conconi, James Foster, John Hammock, Bouba Housseini, Christoph Jindra, Usha Kanagaratnam, Bilal Malaeb, Christian Oldiges, Monica Pinilla, Gisela Robles Aguilar and Nicolai Suppa.

Course Format:

The summer school consisted of 10.5 days of instruction and working group sessions, taught in English (there is potential but not confirmed translation into French). Each participant needed to bring a laptop with Stata to do the problem sets. Throughout the summer school, participants were actively involved in discussions and working through problem sets, and were invited to present their research work and share their experiences.

Dates and Location:

The course ran from Monday 3 July 2017 to Friday 14 July 2017 with a final exam on Saturday 15 July 2017 (non-compulsory).  The summer school was held at Sup de Co Marrakech, in Marrakesh, Morocco.


  • $850 USD for all students, and for academic researchers based in developing countries;
  • $2000 USD for professionals based in developing countries; and
  • $4000 USD for professionals based in developed countries.

Course Application Information

AudienceThe summer school is addressed to those who are working on, or actively interested in gaining skills in, multidimensional poverty measurement, particularly professional staff of national offices of statistics and in government ministries that deal with poverty reduction, professionals from international development institutions, academics, and postgraduate students. Applicants who are currently pursuing work on measurement are also welcome. Other applicants having a demonstrated research interest in empirical analysis in these topics will be considered on the basis of their experience and space availability.
Pre-requisites·A demonstrable knowledge of Stata is an essential pre-requisite for attending the course. Every attendant to the summer school will need to have Stata 10 or higher installed in his/her laptop. The software will not be provided by the summer school.·A strong knowledge in quantitative methods (e.g. econometrics, statistics, etc.) and a strong interest in poverty measurement and analysis are highly desirable.
Financial SupportLimited financial support is available. Competition for financial support will be very strong; however, well qualified and committed applicants with financial need are strongly encouraged to apply. Successful applicants are also highly encouraged to seek support from their local governments and institutions. We would be happy to provide support letters for these funding applications to accepted candidates.
Application FormThe application deadline for the 2017 Summer School has passed. Please contact us if you have any questions.
Questions?Please write to Rachel Pearson, ophi-summerschool@qeh.ox.ac.uk