Cumulative deprivation

Working Paper 2022-604


This paper discusses the recent literature on the identification and aggregation of cumulative deprivation. Individuals who occupy a low position on all well-being dimensions at the same time, are said to suffer from cumulative deprivation. For these individuals, disadvantages in one dimension are further reinforced by disadvantages in other dimensions. In this paper it is discussed how individuals who suffer from cumulative deprivation can be identified in a multidimensional data set and how aggregate measures of cumulative deprivation can be derived from the so-called cumulative deprivation curve. The core concepts are illustrated using the Belgian MEQIN data set, which has been collected in 2016.

Authors: Koen Decancq.

Keywords: Cumulative deprivation, cumulative deprivation curve, multidimensional well-being, Belgium.
JEL: D63, I31