An innovative new tool for assessing, understanding and addressing rural poverty
The discussions around post-2015 and aid effectiveness bring a new focus on how to enhance, measure and track sustainable development. With about 75% of the world's poor living in rural areas, one question is: How do we assess and measure rural poverty in order to be more effective at eradicating it? The International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) developed a simple and innovative tool to help answer this question. Just as rural poverty is based on more than one factor, the tool - the Multidimensional Poverty Assessment Tool (MPAT) - combines 10 different indicators to create a "rural poverty dashboard."
MPAT provides data that can inform all levels of decision making by providing a clearer understanding of rural poverty at the household and village level. As a result, MPAT can significantly strengthen the planning, design, monitoring and evaluation of a project, and thereby contribute to rural poverty reduction.
MPAT is the result of a collaborative, international initiative begun in 2008 and led by the IFAD. The purpose was to develop, test and pilot a new tool for local-level rural poverty assessment. The tool went through extensive field testing in several countries and independent validation and peer-review. MPAT is relatively easy to use, requires few resources to implement, and provides users with a reliable and comprehensive picture of a community's poverty situation.