You are here


A Study of Youth Multidimensional Poverty in Seoul

Geum-Sun ByunㆍHyerim Lee

Traditional efforts to reduce poverty have mainly focused on the lack of financial resources among the elderly and children who has restricted capabilities of earning market income. However, the unprecedented COVID-19 crisis has aggravated youth vulnerability to risks in one or more life domains such as employment, education, mental health and relationships. This study aims to develop multidimensional poverty indicators capturing youth poverty and measuring scale and depth of multiple deprivations faced by Youth in Seoul. Following a literature review and Delphi survey, this study derives 17 indicators covering 7 dimensions: economy, education and skills, employment, housing, health, social capital, and well-being. Analysis result of ‘2020 Seoul Youth Survey’ shows that, 86% of youth in Seoul are facing deprivation at least of one dimension of poverty and 42.5% suffering overlapping deprivations in more than three dimensions. Deprivation of basic capabilities and risk of overlapping poverty were higher than nonmonetary dimensions rather than monetary dimensions. This study suggests that traditional concept of material deprivation could underestimate the actual level of social exclusion of Youth in transition. Under the broader definition of poverty, many more youth would be taken into account as a new policy target group. Given this concept of multidimensional poverty, local governments need to take more responsibility for providing integrated youth supports beyond monetary deprivations.