Are neighbors equal?

Estimating local inequality in three developing countries

Chris Elbers, Peter Lanjouw, Johan Mistiaen, Berk Özler, Kenneth R. Simler
fcnd discussion paper brief

A methodology to produce disaggregated estimates of inequality is implemented in three developing countries: Ecuador, Madagascar, and Mozambique. These inequality estimates are decomposed into progressively more disaggregated spatial units and the results in all three countries are suggestive that even at a very high level of spatial disaggregation, the contribution of within-community inequality to overall inequality remains very high. The results also indicate there is a considerable amount of variation across communities in all three countries. The basic correlates of local-level inequality are explored, and it is consistently found that geographic characteristics are strongly correlated with inequality, even after controlling for demographic and economic conditions."" -- Authors' Abstract