IDM-IMPECO Workshop on poverty measurement, University of Granada

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On June 12 and 13, Dr Helen Suich, Senior Research Fellow with the Australian National University (ANU) IDM team met with representatives of the IMPECO (Investigar para Medir la Pobreza en Costa Rica) project – a University of Granada-University of Costa Rica collaboration to improve research into poverty measurement.  Participating for the IMPECO team were Jimmy Washburn (Professor, University of Costa Rica) and Ana Isabel Guerra, Paloma García, Fran Amor, David Rodríguez-Arias, Verónica Guerrero, María Martín Leal, Gonzalo Abril Paniza and Paula Andrea Valencia (University of Granada).

At a workshop and meetings over two days, IMPECO and IDM colleagues discussed the global poverty measurement research and policy context.  Helen Suich spoke about where the IDM fits in relation to current international measures of poverty, its value add, and updated on the work to ready the IDM for global use. Jimmy Washburn spoke about poverty measures and developments in Costa Rica. Presentations were followed by discussion and planning towards cognitive testing of the IDM survey in Costa Rica.

The cognitive testing will involve asking some of the IDM survey questions that are particularly complex or possibly ambiguous to a relatively small number of participants.  The aim is to understand how people understand and interpret the questions (culturally, linguistically and cognitively) in Costa Rica.  It is the first such testing of the IDM survey in Central America and in Spanish (the original language of the IDM survey is English).

Cognitive testing of revisions to the IDM survey was undertaken in Indonesia earlier this year.  The cognitive testing in Costa Rica will provide a comparison across different linguistic and cultural contexts, contributing to the development and validation of the IDM as a tool for global use.  Similar cognitive testing will be undertaken as part of other IDM studies planned for 2018 and 2019.

Participants discussed the research protocol used in Indonesia as a basis for planning how cognitive testing in Costa Rica would proceed. Key areas covered included:

  • Participant sampling methods – ensuring a representative sample of rural and urban, different age groups, genders, and relevant exclusions;
  • Enumerator experience and training;
  • Data analysis;
  • Ethics and informed consent
  • Logistics of the study

Actions arising from the workshop and meeting will now progress both the planned cognitive testing and  the potential for undertaking an IDM study in Costa Rica.


Find out more about Proyecto IMPECO (en español).