Evolution of poverty analysis through census data in Brazil (1950-2010)

Pier Francesco de Maria


There are no doubts concerning the evolution of counting and registering population in Brazil since the second half of the 20th century. Since 1940, decennially (with exception of 1991), a census that covers all the country is carried out, with the aim of updating data and knowing more about the population and its behavior. However, several problems arise when the interest is analyzing and discussing the characteristics and evolution of poverty, which are related to a trade-off between data availability and measure feasibility. The purpose of this paper is to understand, between 1950 and 2010, how much we have evolved, what and where we still must improve, and which are the current limitations of poverty analysis using census data. To perform this study, the census questionnaires since 1950 are deeply evaluated, combining its analysis with a brief discussion about feasible poverty techniques associated to a simple application example. The whole analysis is intended to show how census data collection have evolved and followed the evolution of poverty though and measurement. However, we conclude that we must improve a lot to have comprehensive data that allow us to measure poverty as a multidimensional not-only-objective phenomenon.

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Centro Universitário UNISOCIESC - Blumenau/SC Rua Pandiá Calógeras, 272 CEP: 89010-350 - Blumenau - SC Telefone: (47) 2111 2900 e-mail: rica@unisociesc.com.br e-mail: oscar.dalfovo@unisociesc.com.br RIC@ - ISSN 1980-7031 CAPES/QUALIS

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