Typologies of Poverty in EU-28 before Covid-19 Pandemic. A Multivariate Statistical Analysis

Ciprian Iftimoaei (ciprian.iftimoaei@iasi.insse.ro)
National Institute of Statistics, “Al. I. Cuza” University of Iasi
Ionuț-Cristian Baciu (ionut.baciu@iasi.insse.ro)
Iasi County Directorate of Statistics
Vicențiu-Robert Gabor (vicentiu.gabor@iasi.insse.ro)
“Al. I. Cuza” University of Iasi, Iasi County Directorate of Statistics


Following the global economic and financial crisis of 2009-2012, the issue of poverty has returned to the attention of public policy makers at international, European and national level. To combat the effects of the economic crisis, the European Union has launched the Europe 2020 strategy for smart, sustainable, inclusive growth. One of the objectives of this strategy was to reduce by 20 million the number of people threatened by poverty or social exclusion. Many EU member states have made significant progress in combating the poverty and social exclusion reflected in official statistics, while other countries have stagnated even though the macroeconomic situation has improved until the onset of the pandemic crisis. This study proposes the analysis of poverty at EU-28 level, using a set of relevant socio-economic indicators (relative poverty rate, income inequality index, relative median deficit, GINI coefficient, AROPE indicator, in-work poverty rate) provided by Eurostat and national institutes of statistics. Descriptive, geospatial (grouping analysis) and multivariate (Principal Components Analyses) statistical analyses were applied to highlight the typologies of poverty within the EU. The study also looks at whether the income inequality index and the GINI coefficient influence the relative poverty rate in EU member states. The typology of poverty at EU-28 level will be represented by visualization techniques (graphs and maps) to highlight the characteristics of countries that have made progress versus regress in combating poverty. This study is also important from the perspective of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development which proposes the fight against poverty as its first objective, the EU asserting itself since the adoption of this document as a global leader in implementing the sustainable development goals.

Key Words: poverty, social exclusion, welfare, sustainable development, multivariate statistical analysis
JEL Classification: I320

[Full Text]

Romanian Statistical Review 4/2021