Colombia using MPI to inform social policies, Zavaleta tells ‘Portfolio’

Colombia has shown a strong commitment to using the results of a multidimensional poverty measure to set goals for social policies, OPHI Research Officer Diego Zavaleta has told the economic newspaper ‘Portfolio’ in an interview.

Government ministries have used the data generated by Colombia’s Multidimensional Poverty Index (MPI) to inform public policies and programmes such as ‘Más Familias en Acción’ (‘More Families in Action’) and ‘Red Unidos’ (‘Red States’), because it gives a more complete picture of who is poor and how they are deprived, Zavaleta said.

In 2011, the Government of Colombia adopted a national MPI which assesses social and health-related aspects of poverty in five dimensions. Each of the indicators in the national MPI reflects the goals and targets of Colombia’s pioneering poverty-reduction strategy.

It is a powerful example of how the Alkire Foster method of multidimensional measurement can inform such strategies and help to create a clear system of accountabiliy.

“The methodology is adjustable, so you can change the variables and relevant topics of analysis, depending on the interests of each nation,” Zavaleta told ‘Portfolio’.

You can read the full interview, in Spanish, here.