Poverty

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A street trader looks out from his store in Cape Town, South Africa. Defining people who earn US$2 a day as middle class doesn’t make sense. EPA/Nic Bothma

Africa’s rising middle class: time to sort out fact from fiction

Some economists have touted the rising middle class as a panacea for Africa's challenges. But a more realistic diagnosis of what makes up a middle class is needed.
$2 a day bought me a lacto-ovo-pesco vegetarian style diet (milk, eggs and fish) but with very small quantities of protein foods. Peterfz30/Shutterstock

Lessons from living below the extreme poverty line on $2 a day

Last week I joined 8,500 Australians on the charity challenge to live below the extreme poverty line, spending just $2 a day on food for five days. It was tough and my diet was far from complete.
Members of South Africa’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, rally for the youth wage subsidy. Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko

How two crucial trends are affecting unemployment in South Africa

South Africa's labour market suffers from high unemployment. Reform of the education system may provide the only long-term sustainable solution to the problem.
Will government cuts to tax credits hit Britain’s poorest the hardest? Becky Stares/shutterstock

Why the living wage won’t compensate for tax credit cuts

Plans to stop universal credit payments in favour of a 'national living wage' will not address the long-standing poverty of many people in paid employment.
Agriculture remains the major source of employment in Ghana, even though its share in the economy has been in steady decline. Reuters/Thierry Gouegnon

Ghana needs a new strategy to create decent jobs and reduce inequality

Economic growth is a necessary condition for development. But it can only pass the sufficient condition test if growth translates into high-earning jobs. Ghana's recent history illustrates this.

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