Understanding Poverty and Conflict

people gathering under trees
August 15, 2011

A significant body of knowledge exists on the relationship between poverty and conflict. Research has shown that low per capita income and slow economic growth drastically increase the chances that a country will experience violence. Driven in part by these findings, donors and their partners are implementing increasing numbers of economic development programs in conflict and post-conflict environments, based on the assumption that these will contribute to both poverty reduction and conflict management.

To test this assumption, Mercy Corps implemented the USAID-funded Evaluation and Assessment of Poverty and Conflict Interventions (EAPC) research project. Over the 18 month life of the project, Mercy Corps worked with its field teams in Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Uganda to 1) develop indicators and data collection tools, 2) field test these indicators and tools, and 3) begin to assess several theories of change that inform Mercy Corps’ programs.

Findings from the research project are shared in three key documents:

Conflict & Economics: Lessons Learned on Measuring Impact - a summary of learning about M&E in conflict-affected environments, including indicator menus and data collection tools

A case study highlighting findings from Uganda

A case study highlighting findings from Indonesia