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The Individual Deprivation Measure: South African country study results

11th Mar 2020 @ 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

The Individual Deprivation Measure (IDM) is an innovative gender-sensitive measure of multidimensional poverty which assesses multiple dimensions of poverty at the individual level. An IDM South Africa country study was undertaken in 2019, which had two broad aims.

The first was to conduct a nationally representative survey to measure and analyse the extent of deprivation across 15 dimensions of poverty for individuals aged 16 years and over. More than 8,600 individuals were interviewed across all nine provinces.

The second objective of the study was to implement the same survey with a purposive sample of people with disabilities in order to gain a better understanding of the type and extent of deprivation across these 15 dimensions of poverty faced by individuals with disabilities. This purposive sample was undertaken to ensure that we had a sample of sufficient size as to allow comparisons between individuals with a disability and those without. 2,311 individuals were interviewed in Gauteng and Limpopo.

The IDM as an individual measure of multidimensional poverty will first be briefly introduced, illustrating how a fuller picture of individual-level poverty is revealed when data is collected at the individual level rather than at the household level. The data from the IDM South Africa study will be used to demonstrate the rich insights into how different groups experience poverty differently. Four sub-group analyses were undertaken in this initial analysis – comparisons by gender, by age, by rural/urban location, and by disability status.


About the Presenter


Dr Helen Suich is a senior research fellow in the IDM programme at the Crawford School of Public Policy, and she leads the South Africa IDM study. Her research focuses on issues of poverty alleviation, examining the impacts of rural development interventions on multidimensional poverty and vulnerability. Helen has extensive field experience across southern Africa and in Indonesia. She has previously worked at the University of Oxford, for the Namibian government, for non-government organisations and as an independent consultant.




Dr Helen Suich, Associate Professor Janet Hunt

Associate Professor Janet Hunt co-leads the ANU IDM Team with Professor Sharon Bessell. She edited the Methodology Update 2017. She also conducts research about Indigenous development at ANU’s Centre for Aboriginal Economic Policy Research. Previous roles include lecturing at RMIT and Deakin Universities in international development and Executive Director of the Australian Council for International Development and the International Women’s Development Agency.


The IDM is a partnership between the Australian National University (ANU), the International Women’s Development Agency and the Australian Government through the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade. The IDM South African country study was lead by the ANU IDM team with data collection conducted by ikapadata Pty Ltd, a Cape Town-based survey company.



11th Mar 2020
1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
Event Category:


Amy Jephthah


UCT School of Economics, 4th Floor Seminar Room
UCT Middle Campus
Cape Town, Western Cape 7700 South Africa
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