What if growth had been as good for the poor as everyone else?

Research reports and studies
May 2015
Chris Hoy and Emma Samman
World leaders are set to endorse an ambitious set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September 2015. Proposed targets aim to eliminate extreme income poverty ($1.25 a day) by 2030 and ensure that the bottom 40% of the distribution experiences higher than average growth. Although extreme poverty has fallen considerably over the last 30 years, it persists at unacceptably high levels and inequality within many countries has risen. More equally distributed growth could reduce poverty further, in addition to having other positive spill-over effects.

Numerous projections have suggested that the world could come close to eliminating extreme poverty by 2030. However they tend to assume that growth will be shared equally by all people, regardless of where they are located in the income distribution. This report interrogates this assumption. It considers the implications of growth in which the bottom 40% of the population shares equally or more, taking a retrospective view.