Extreme Poverty Better Defined – by Mahbub al Haq, Former Finance Minister of Pakistan and Amartya Sen, Nobel Prize for Economics

“Extreme poverty is better defined as the lack of meaningful choices for basic human rights. With this definition, three necessary attributes must exist if extreme poverty is to end: an individual must be empowered to make choices, they must be equipped to make choices, and they must live in an enabling environment where they can act on those choices.” – Mahbub al Haq,  Former Finance Minister of Pakistan and Amartya Sen, Nobel Prize for Economics

Poverty has to be defined in a new way. We’ve said it is in dollars, but we know two things:

1. Poverty Redefined:  Poverty is not just about money.  It’s not necessarily about how much someone makes.  It depends on their opportunities, their country’s situation, their cost of living and their ability to ask.

2. Wealth Redefined.   Wealth is not just about money either.  True wealth has to do with community, family, meaning, purpose.

May we help everyone have the opportunity to live a life of richness. It’s not only defined by their ability to provide, but also in personal growth, meaning, and relationships.  That’s true living.

Mahbub-ul-Haq (1934 – 1998) was a game theorist, economist, and professor of Microeconomics at the University of Karachi. He was involved in the human development theory (HDP), and the founder of the Human Development Report (HDR). According to Haq’s 1996 book Reflections on Human Development, his work also opened new avenues to policy proposals for human development paradigms.  Mahbub was married to Khadija Haq, and they had two children.

Amartya Kumar Sen is an Indian philosopher and economist who was awarded the 1998 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences for his contributions to welfare economics and social choice theory, and for his interest in the problems of society’s poorest members. Sen is best known for his work on the causes of famine, which led to the development of practical solutions for preventing or limiting the effects of real or perceived shortages of food.  Sen has received honorary degrees from more than 90 universities around the world.

Bio Source: Wikipedia


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