Poverty in the Hindu Kush Himalayas can be traced in part to factors specific to mountain regions, which lead to higher and more persistent levels of poverty and vulnerability than in non-mountain areas. Poverty and vulnerability are closely related and mutually reinforcing. Vulnerability, which can be thought of in terms of aspects such as exposure, sensitivity and adaptive capacity, may influence household behavior and coping strategies, making it an important consideration for poverty reduction policies.
But one-dimensional income poverty measures have had limited success. It has become clear that we need to address mountain poverty and vulnerability in a holistic, multi-dimensional way. ICIMOD employs a range of tools to capture this nuanced picture, from conducting household surveys across five member countries to preparing datasets for a regional database to pioneering a Poverty and Vulnerability Assessment survey tool to identify pockets and location-specific drivers of poverty and vulnerability. Access to richer and more precise information means that practitioners can target and design development interventions to have a greater and more lasting impact.