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Students will research and document a development case study in a country of their choice.

1. Title: a concise title conveying the topic of the case study and the proposed location of the research.

2. Introduction/background: this section describes the development challenge or problem being addressed by the case study, and should contain a substantial but concise overview of the relevant literature for the topic and location.

3. Analysis of the problem – what are the drivers of this issue and how is it manifesting in terms of human and/or economic development or social/economic justice for the population in question?

4. Suggested solutions to the problem, or proposals for further research that will help to uncover potential avenues to addressing the problem. 

Analysis of problem

China: continues largest poverty alleviation campaign

The topic that is been selected for this assignment is Capabilities and Poverty: Case study of urban poverty in China.   In China the poverty, mainly remain in the rural areas, in urban areas the poverty has been eliminated with the help of economic growth. The dramatic progress in the reduction of poverty has been seen in China over the past three decades. According to the World Bank, around 500 million people in China were lifted out of the extreme conditions of poverty, In 1981 the poverty rate in China was 88 per cent that is been reduced to 6.5 per cent in 2012 (The World Bank, 2018). The poverty level in China was measured by the percentage of people living on the equivalent of the US $1.90 or less per day. Since the Deng Xiaoping started the instituting market reforms in the late 1970s, the country has become a fastest grown economy in the world. The country has recorded a 10% continuous growth in the gross domestic product (Xuequan, 2018). This growth had led China toward a substantial increase in the living stands of the population and marked a decline in the poverty.  In between 1981 to 2008, the population of China who is earning $1.25 per day or less has estimated to fall from 85 per cent to 13.1 per cent, approx. 600 million people have been removed from the poverty (Das, 2018).  With the rapid development in the country, the country has faced the various kinds of problems.

China has faced the problems of environmental degradation and natural resources scarcity. The rapid development in the standard of living has raised the condition of disparities among different parts of the country. The country also faces the problem of income inequality, the inequality is not only seen at income level but is also seen at educational and health level. The economy of China is decentralised were the responsibility of health and education is lies on the government, the government of China is responsible for providing the fund related to the health and education of the people (Weiping, 2018).  The poor localities and rural areas have not able to avail these funds and are not able to afford the high cost of private health and education instructions.

Since the economic reform in 1978 China has maintained a growth rate of more than 30 years and this continues growth has increased the average living standards of the people of China. In previous China has common characteristics with the rest of developing Asian countries such as low per capita income, large population and scarcity of resources but in 15 years China has made a drastic growth with average per capita growth of 8.7 per cent.    

China emerged as a country that has reduced the level of poverty in the country and provides good living standard to the population. Being a most populous country, this is the very big achievement of the economy of China. By 2004, approx. 500 million people have climbed out of the poverty. There is a common saying the positive things also bring some negative aspects to them, the same thing happens with China. With the rapid economic growth and drastic reduction, poverty has arisen some problems with it. Problems arise with the poverty reduction are:

  • The reduction in poverty arise the problem of Inequality
  • The reduction in poverty increased a gap between Rural and urban areas and people or divide rural and urban
  • The availability of Natural resources also get affected and the environmental degradation has increased.

Increased inequality

The economic growth of China has shown the rapid development in the country and every people has to get benefit out of it and the poverty also gets reduced. However, the benefit of the economic growth and poverty reduction has reached to people in very different extent, some of the people have got the full benefit out of the economic reform, some people have got average benefits and some has got the very little benefit of the economic reform. Due to the improper distribution of the benefits, the problem of inequality has raised. The problem of inequality not only raised in the income distribution but inequality also has taken place in the health care system and education system of the country.  The Gini measure of inequality has increased from .31 to .45 after the reform (Mei, 2016). 

With the reduction of poverty, the inequality has taken place in the economy and due to that increased inequality levels, China has faced the problem of rural-urban division. The main reason behind the rural-urban division is the unequal distribution of income between the rural and urban areas. The survey conducted by households in 1995 showed that the gap between the income level of the rural and urban area is accounted 35 per cent. According to the China National Bureau of Statistic in 2009 the urban per capita annual income was at the US $2525 that is approx. three times more than the per capita annual income of the rural areas people this was the largest gap recorded since 1978 (Yan and Fan, 2014).  There is urban biased economic policy is been adopted by the government that leads to the income disparities.    

To reduce the poverty in the country, China has utilised the maximum range of natural resources and for the development and continues economic development the country has developed the plan of industrialization due to which the problem of environmental degradation has occurred. China has considered being the most polluted country in the world with the high in population the country is high in pollution. For the economic development and poverty alleviation, the country did not put their focus on the scarcity of the natural resources and on the environmental degradation (Si, Yu, Wu, Chen, Chen and Su, 2015).  Due to the improper development of the country leads the economy as the most polluted economy of the world. Due to the high amount of pollution, many health problems have been raised in the economy. The people of China were suffering from various kind of skin and breathing related illness such as skin allergy, asthma etc.    

China can solve the problem of inequality, rural-urban division and Scarcity of Natural resources and environmental degradation by adopting these solutions:

The country can create jobs by investing in infrastructure: the country can create employment opportunities by making the investment in renovating abandoned housing, developing renewable energy sources, significantly increasing affordable housing investment and by making other common sense investments (Rakodi, 2014). 

Strengthen Families by improving job quality: the urban population of China are living the good standard of living and to the inequality in the economy it becomes the necessary requirement for the country to improve the living standard of the rural areas that China can improve the condition of the rural people by improving the quality of job with increased pay scale (Bene, 2016).

Rural-Urban Divide

Invest in the Human Capital: to reduce the inequality in the economy China can make the investment in expanding access to affordable and high quality of early education and childcare. The country can create good pathways to the good jobs such as national subsidised jobs, national service opportunities and apprenticeships and by implementing education for all to ensure that any student could not be left behind. 

China can ensure disparity by taking care of employees or worker with disabilities, the country can make sure that the people with the disabilities will get a fair chance of economic security and employment.

China can remove the inequality by closing the loopholes of close taxes that are providing benefits to the wealthy people.

China can expand the Medicaid and ensure that all the people of China get the affordable and high-quality health treatment and coverage.

To control the environmental degradation it is important for China to spread awareness among the people about the danger relates to the pollution and what measures the residents has to follow to manage the conditions (Ward, 2016).

It is important for the Government of China to form policies related to the control of pollution in the country because it is the right of the people of China to live in the fresh and healthy employment. 

To protect the environment from the Industrial and agricultural Pollution it is important for the government to develop a policy which specifies the rules regarding the discharge of the pollutant in water and air.

The natural resources are limited it is very important for every economy to preserve their natural resources for the future generation. The chin has used their natural resources to the higher extent now it is the responsibility of the government to direct the companies to use the natural resources effectively and save it for future generation (Uddin, Shahbaz, Arouri, and Teulon, 2014). 


To conclude, China is the developed nation and the status of the developed nation is been attained by the country by developing the economic growth and by the reduction in poverty. To develop the economy the country has used the natural resources to highest extent and become the developed nation the country has set up various industries due to which the level of air and water pollution has also increased. After attaining the economic growth the country, get success in removing poverty but with the reduction in poverty the country has faced various problems like inequality, rural-urban division and Scarcity of Natural resources and environmental degradation and many more. Now it is a high time the country has provides their focus on providing equal opportunities to the people rural areas and sustainable development of the economy.


Bene, C., Arthur, R., Norbury, H., Allison, E.H., Beveridge, M., Bush, S., Campling, L., Leschen, W., Little, D., Squires, D. and Thilsted, S.H., (2016). Contribution of fisheries and aquaculture to food security and poverty reduction: assessing the current evidence.  Journal of World Development, 79, pp.177-196.

Das, S. (2018) Environmental Degradation [Online] Available from: [Accessed on: 9-9-2018].

Mei, L. (2016) China resettlement Poverty reduction. [Online] Available from: [Accessed on: 9-9-2018].

Rakodi, C., (2014). Urban livelihoods: A people-centred approach to reducing poverty. U.K: Routledge.

Si, S., Yu, X., Wu, A., Chen, S., Chen, S. and Su, Y., (2015). Entrepreneurship and poverty reduction: A case study of Yiwu, China. Asia Pacific Journal of Management, 32(1), pp.119-143.

The World Bank. (2018) The Word Bank in China. [Online] Available From: [Accessed on: 9-9-2018].

Uddin, G.S., Shahbaz, M., Arouri, M. and Teulon, F., (2014). Financial development and poverty reduction nexus: A cointegration and causality analysis in Bangladesh. Journal of Economic Modelling, 36, pp.405-412.

Ward, P.S., (2016). Transient poverty, poverty dynamics, and vulnerability to poverty: An empirical analysis using a balanced panel from rural China. Journal of World development, 78, pp.541-553.

Weiping, T. (2018) China Approach to Reduce Poverty: Target measures to lift people out of poverty. [Online] Available from: [Accessed on: 9-9-2018].

Xuequan, M. (2018) China continues largest poverty alleviation campaign in history. [Online] Available from: [Accessed on: 9-9-2018].

Yan, D. and Fan, H. (2014) Infrastructure, growth and poverty reduction in China. [Online] Available from: [Accessed on: 9-9-2018].

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