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Miguel Franco T.

Dimayacyac Ec111 I POVERTY IN A GROWING COUNTRY Countries with high population numbers are faced with poverty. They will try every possible solution to overcome this social problem. Interestingly, a good deal of interest rests on exploration on poverty. In fact, there is a very vast amount of literature available for a student to examine. It is just up to the student how to narrow down his search parameters. For this paper, the aim is to talk about the relationship of poverty and economic performance of a country. Strait (2001) saw that there has been some attempts to scholarly identify the underlying factors in the growth of urban poverty (p. 276). For sure, governments have commissioned some of them in order to deal the problem more effectively. Mead (1994) argued that researchers must constantly search for new, different sources of information in order to explain poverty better (p. 333). It seems to me that Straits observation is the result of Meads claim. Researchers are goi ng for the extra mile in order to get to the bottom of the bottomless pit of poverty. Since the government and other policy makers cannot easily eradicate poverty in their respective territories, they should do something about it because it is a reality check for any policy maker out there. Millions of people are suffering without any hope of getting out of it. Policymakers are still at a loss on how to deal with this ever growing problem It is important to stress the fact that a growing population increases the level of polarization between the rich and the poor (Abernethy, 2002, 75). This simply means that levels of poverty are getting higher and the rich are getting richer in a scenario where the population continuously grows, as in the United States, the subject of Abernethys inquiry. Furthermore, Macunovich (1996) focused on the fact population growth amplifies inequalities in a given society. Since there are more mouths to feed, the owners of the food industry players are raking in more income from consumers. In a Marxist sense, the capitalist is capitalizing on the opportunity to earn more money because of the increased population of the society. An observant reader would infer from this line of argument that population control should be the solution in this problem. However, this is not always the proper solution to this age-old riddle. Hill & Rapp (2009) stressed that solving poverty would start if all causes are covered (40). This is supported by Lichter, Tarisi, & Taquino (2012) that said that policies are always centered on the urban-based poverty, making rural-based poverty somewhat inexistent (p. 383). Population control is always at the top of the poverty solution discourse because what is being talked about for most of the time is the urban-based poverty. It is important to keep in mind the observation of Lichter et al., since the proposed solutions would be for naught if not all sectors affected by poverty would not be covered. Obviously poverty is a hindrance to economic growth. But poverty is a blessing in disguise because in highlights possible sources of solutions to resolve the very same problem of poverty. Since there is an excess of workers, the country may tap this excess workers for economic growth. For example, Lehmijoki & Palokangas (2009) concluded that in trade liberalized economies, working women have reduced fertility rates, thus dropped birth rates, and increased income levels. It would seem that the problem is just a matter of reallocation of resources in order to optimize the economy of a particular country. Another noteworthy study is that one by Turner (2009). In that paper, Turner observed that China, employing its policy regarding lowering fertility rates, is experiencing stabilizing economic growth (p. 2983). From these two papers, it can be easily inferred that only political will is needed in order to somehow get through the puzzle imposed by poverty to our society. But we do not know everything regarding poverty. Mead (1994) identified several factors about the difficulties in understanding poverty. I would only mention one here because I think this is

the one that most researchers are having problems with: sorting out cause and effect. Researchers are having a hard time deliberating whether the gathered data is for cause or effect since it is almost the same for the case of poverty. We need to sort things out in order to deliver a better picture regarding poverty in a particular society. Poverty is an ever-evolving problem in our society. Therefore, researchers are having a hard time understanding it because it is a very broad aspect. No one can completely grasp the idea of poverty because there are some characteristics of poverty that are only present in a particular society and is absent in others.

BIBLIOGRAPHY Abernethy, V. D. (2002). Population Dynamics: Poverty, Inequality, and Self-Regulating Fertility Rates. Population and Environment, 24(1), 69-96. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/27503821.pdf Hill, R. P. & Rapp, J. M. (2009). Globalization and Poverty: Oxymoron or New Possibilities? Journal of Business Ethics, 85(Supplement 1), 39-47. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/40294819.pdf Lehmijoki, U. & Palokangas T. (2009). Population Growth Overshooting and Trade in Developing Countries. Journal of Population Economics, 22(1), 43-56. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/40344718.pdf Lichter, D. T., Parisi, D., & Taquino, M. C. (2012). The Geography of Exclusion: Race, Segregation, and Concentrated Poverty. Social Problems, 59(3), 364-88. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/10.1525/sp.2012.59.3.364.pdf Macunovich, D. J. (1996). A Review of Recent Developments in the Economics of Fertility. In P. Menchik (Ed.), Household and Family Economics. Boston: Kluwer Academic Pub. Mead, L. M. (1994). Poverty: How Little We Know. Social Service Review, 68(3), 322-50. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/30012535.pdf Strait, J. B. (2001). The Disparate Impact of Metropolitan Economic Change: The Growth of Extreme Poverty Neighborhoods, 1970-1990. Economic Geography, 77(3), 272-305. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/3594075.pdf Turner, A. (2009). Population Priorities: The Challenge of Continued Rapid Population Growth. Philosophical Transactions: Biological Sciences, 364(1532), 2977-2984. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/pdfplus/40486085.pdf