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How to create a poverty profile

A poverty profile is most commonly understood to be a description of the character of poverty among a population, often using qualitative and quantitative information to describe overall rates and traits of poverty. Poverty profiling can be a useful tool as poverty affects different communities of interest in different ways. They are most effective when the indicators are robust, the whole community of interest is involved in producing them and when it is more than a collection of figures describing poverty.

Poverty profiles should:

  • Clearly identify the community of interest
  • Clearly identify and involve all stakeholders
  • Specify any sub-themes that are of particular interest, e.g. education, housing
  • Systematically identify and gather information

Poverty profiles should aspire to:

  • Present a comprehensive account of the nature of poverty
  • Accurately and comprehensively report the extent of poverty
  • Identify the most intensive poverty within the community of interest
  • Use indicators that are fit-for-purpose
  • Describe the UK and Scottish policy context and specifically discuss the relevance of this to the community of interest
  • Appraise the Community Planning Partnership policy context (or community of interest)
  • Present an action plan or recommendations for future action
  • Identify trends, as well as profiling the here-and-now
  • Compare the extent of poverty beyond the community of interest
  • Be of value - an implementation, communication and dissemination strategy should be an integral part of the process

On this page you can access a paper on how to put together a poverty profile which contains a suggested template on how to go about it. You can also access links to resources on how other places have put together their poverty profiles.