To eradicate extreme poverty, massive global investment is required in social assistance, education and pro-poorest economic growth
— Chronic Poverty Report 2014-15: The road to zero extreme poverty

Getting to zero extreme poverty

For the poorest people, moving out of poverty can be an enormous challenge. But continuing to stay out of poverty for the rest of their lives is a much greater and for some, impossible, task. Many people rise above the poverty line only to tumble back beneath it.

Millions of vulnerable people return to extreme poverty, or become poor for the first time, when they are hit by a combination or sequence of shocks, such as a serious drought, a costly illness, and insecurity or conflict in their community. While this 'revolving door' of poverty persists, we won't be able to eradicate extreme poverty for good. 

To make sure people move out and stay out of poverty, we need to:

  1. Tackle chronic poverty

  2. Prevent impoverishment

  3. Sustain poverty escapes

Policies need to be designed with these three objectives in mind if zero extreme poverty is to become a reality.

Read more about the policies required to eradicate poverty in the Chronic Poverty Report 2014-15: The road to zero poverty.

What is chronic poverty?

Chronic poverty is the long and grinding poverty that people live in for many years, and for some people, for their whole lives. This poverty is often passed on to their children, creating an inter-generational cycle of poverty. 

Chronically poor people need to be at the centre of poverty reduction policies if we are going to achieve the goal of eradicating extreme poverty for good.


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Our latest blog:

10 Sustainable Development Goals that keep the eradication of poverty at the centre – a contribution to the thinking of the Secretary General’s Open Working Group on the SDGs. By Andrew Shepherd.

The Secretary-General’s Open Working Group has been in session for over a year now, and has produced a compilation of 19 ‘focus areas’ which are an excellent basis for its formulation of prototype Sustainable Development Goals over the next few weeks. However, 19 goal areas will be too many, and in this blog, Andrew Shepherd demonstrates how the focus areas could be combined to produce a goal structure that is convincing and intuitive, but also neat and memorable - and so capable of mobilising support from individuals, civil society, the media and  governments over the period of time necessary to implement the measures. It also includes a proposal for a new Poverty Eradication Goal.

Read the full blog here


Our recent publications

To find more of our publications, take a look at our resources page.

The Chronic Poverty Report 2014-15: The road to zero extreme poverty

The Chronic Poverty Report 2014-15: The road to zero extreme poverty

Challenge Paper 2: How resilient are escapes out of poverty?

Challenge Paper 2: How resilient are escapes out of poverty?

Investigating resilience thresholds in sub-Saharan Africa

Investigating resilience thresholds in sub-Saharan Africa