Demos

Poverty in Perspective

About the types and indicators

To tackle poverty effectively we need to better understand how it manifests itself as a ‘lived experience’. Poverty is not just about low income, but about how this affects your life, how you came to be in poverty and what keeps you there.

We identified 20 ‘indicators’ of poverty, from housing, health and education to employment and family support. By mapping these indicators onto the low-income population, we were able to see how they clustered together for different low income households. The particular combinations of these indicators created the 15 different ‘types’ of poverty across three cohorts.

This complex, multi-dimensional landscape sheds light on the nature of poverty in Britain today and, crucially, provides a basis for a more nuanced, tailored approach to tackling it on the ground.

Child poverty types

Based on quantitative analysis and in-depth interviews with families below the poverty line, we identified five child poverty types in Britain today.

View the five types of child poverty.

Pensioner poverty types

The research identified five main types of poverty in older people. Click here to find out more.

Childless working age poverty

Among childless working age households, there are five main types of poverty. Click here to find out more.