Reexamining the Relationship between Poverty and Sex of the Household Head: Evidence from Ouagadougou (Burkina Faso)

Madeleine Wayack Pambè, Université de Ouagadougou
Soufianou Moussa, Institut Superieur des Sciences de la Population (ISSP)

Using principal component analysis and cluster analysis on census data, the paper reexamines the relationship between the gender of the household head and poverty in Ouagadougou. First, we investigated whether the distinction of households based on the sex of the household head sufficiently explains the difference between female and male headed households. Second, we investigated whether households headed by women were systematically more impoverished than those headed by men. Results indicated that of the different sub-categories of household heads obtained in the analyses, the sub-group of young, active, single women is that which most common in richer households. The group composed of elderly, inactive widows have the most mediocre living conditions. Those results stress the importance of social class and life cycle in the relationship between poverty and female household heads.

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 Presented in Session P1. Marriage, Unions, Families, and Households