Decomposing multidimensional child poverty and its drivers in the Mouhoun region of Burkina Faso, West Africa

Cynthia L. Fonta*, Thomas B. Yameogo, Halidou Tinto, Tiff Van Huysen, Hamtandi Magloire Natama, Adelaide Compaore, William M. Fonta

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
61 Downloads (Pure)


Background: The global poverty profile shows that Africa and Asia bear the highest burden of multidimensional child poverty. Child survival and development therefore depend on socioeconomic and environmental factors that surround a child.The aim of this paper is to measure multidimensional child poverty and underpin what drives it among children aged 5 to 18 years in a resource poor region of Burkina Faso. Methods: Using primary data collected from a cross sectional study of 722 households in the Mouhoun region of Burkina Faso, the Alkire-Foster methodology was applied to estimate and decompose child poverty among children aged 5-18 years. Seven broad dimensions guided by the child poverty literature, data availability and the country's SDGs were used. A binary logistic regression model was applied to identify drivers of multidimensional child poverty in the region. Results: The highest prevalence of deprivations were recorded in water and sanitation (91%), information and leisure (89%) followed by education (83%). Interestingly, at k = 3 (the sum of weighted indicators that a child must be deprived to be considered multidimensionally poor), about 97% of children are deprived in at least three of the seven dimensions. At k = 4 to k = 6, between 88.7 and 30.9% of children were equally classified as suffering from multidimensional poverty. The odds of multidimensional poverty were reduced in children who belonged to households with a formally educated mother (OR = 0.49) or stable sources of income (OR = 0.31, OR = 0.33). The results equally revealed that being an adolescent (OR = 0.67), residing in the urban area of Boromo (OR = 0.13) and rural area of Safané (OR = 0.61) reduced the odds of child poverty. On the other hand, child poverty was highest among children from the rural area of Yé (OR = 2.74), polygamous households (OR = 1.47, OR = 5.57 and OR = 1.96), households with an adult head suffering from a longstanding illness (OR = 1.61), households with debts (OR = 1.01) and households with above five number of children/woman (OR = 1.49). Conclusion: Child poverty is best determined by using a multidimensional approach that involves an interplay of indicators and dimensions, bearing in mind its causation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number149
Number of pages17
JournalBMC Public Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 31 Jan 2020

Structured keywords

  • SPS Centre for the Study of Poverty and Social Justice


  • Alkire and Foster methodology
  • Burkina Faso
  • Deprivations
  • Multidimensional child poverty
  • Poverty decomposition


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