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Status Consumption and Poverty in Developing Countries

By L.A.C.M. van Kempen

Abstract

This thesis investigates the scope, nature and welfare effects of status consumption by the poor in developing countries, a phenomenon that is virtually unexplored in the development economics literature. It addresses questions such as: why do the poor buy status-intensive goods, while they suffer from inadequate levels of basic needs satisfaction? Is it because they are willing to pay extra for a good if it displays a well-known logo of a Western brand? What role do counterfeit goods play in status consumption by the poor? And do Western brand-name goods consumed by others provoke envy in poor observers? Answers to these questions are sought by the collection of primary data and the use of a variety of methodologies and techniques, including experiments, regression analysis and discriminant analysis.

Publisher: CentER Dissertation Series
Year: 2005
OAI identifier: oai:wo.uvt.nl:166530
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