e-ISSN 2231-8542
ISSN 1511-3701

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Perceptions of Causes of Poverty among Rural and Urban Households in Zomba Malawi

Steven Henry Dunga

Pertanika Journal of Tropical Agricultural Science, Volume 25, Issue S, November 2017

Keywords: Fate, households, individualistic, perceptions, poverty, rural, structural, urban

Published on: 7 May 2018

An important macro-economic objective of a country is poverty reduction. This objective is shared by its development partners. Many policies have been introduced at the international and national levels to tackle poverty, especially hard core and abject poverty. Each policy is theory- driven. These theories that shape and inform the policies are developed by practitioners whom in most cases have not directly experienced poverty themselves. Thus, it is no surprise these policies fail to solve or minimise the problems via the resultant intervention. There is therefore a mismatch as it were, that requires a reset, or at the very least, adapting as opposed to adopting the theories and their prognosis therein. Based on the Feagin scale, there are three main categories related to perceptions of poverty: Individual, Structural, and Fatalistic. The objectives of the paper are to examine the perceptions of causes of poverty among households in Malawi, and the factors influencing those perceptions. A special focus is on rural and urban households to see if there exists a significant difference in their perceptions. The results show a variation in perceptions, with household income, location of the household and gender of the head of household proving to be significant predictors. Additionally, by location, people in the rural areas allude to the individualistic causes of poverty. Thus, approaches to tackle poverty can be effective if these perceptions are taken into account.

ISSN 1511-3701

e-ISSN 2231-8542

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