Front Cover
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Section 1: Introduction
 Section 2: Development of socio-economic...
 Section 3: Description of primary...
 Section 4: General improvement...
 Section 5: Statistics of special...
 Appendix 1
 Back Cover

Title: Guidelines on socio-economic indicators for monitoring and evaluating agrarian reform and rural development
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00084640/00001
 Material Information
Title: Guidelines on socio-economic indicators for monitoring and evaluating agrarian reform and rural development
Physical Description: 60 p. : ; 30 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Conference: World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, (1979
Publisher: Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
Place of Publication: Rome
Publication Date: 1988
Subject: Rural development -- Evaluation   ( lcsh )
Rural development -- Economic aspects   ( lcsh )
Land reform -- Evaluation   ( lcsh )
Land reform -- Social aspects   ( lcsh )
Land reform -- Economic aspects   ( lcsh )
Economic indicators   ( lcsh )
Social indicators   ( lcsh )
Genre: international intergovernmental publication   ( marcgt )
bibliography   ( marcgt )
conference publication   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references.
General Note: "WCARRD World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development, ten years of follow-up"--Cover.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00084640
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 19787881
lccn - 90101712

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover
    Title Page
        Title Page
    Table of Contents
        Table of Contents 1
        Table of Contents 2
    Section 1: Introduction
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
    Section 2: Development of socio-economic indicators
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
    Section 3: Description of primary indicators
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
        Page 36
        Page 37
        Page 38
        Page 39
    Section 4: General improvement of statistical programmes
        Page 40
        Page 41
        Page 42
        Page 43
        Page 44
        Page 45
        Page 46
        Page 47
    Section 5: Statistics of special population groups
        Page 48
        Page 49
        Page 50
        Page 51
    Appendix 1
        Page 52
        Page 53
        Page 54
        Page 55
        Page 56
        Page 57
        Page 58
        Page 59
        Page 60
    Back Cover
        Page 61
Full Text
<- V-


World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural Development

Guidelines on Socio-Economic Indicators
for Monitoring and Evaluating
Agrarian Reform and Rural Development







Rome, 1988




1.1 Preparation of the guidelines
1.2 Basic principles and objectives of WCARRD
1.3 Scope of the WCARRD Socio-Economic Indicators



Description of WCARRD Objectives and Policy Areas
Desirable properties of indicators
Levels of disaggregation
Selection of Socio-Economic Indicators
Coverage of WCARRD policy areas
Types and Ordering of Indicators


Indicator 1: Percentage of population in households with per
capital income between the poverty line
Indicator 2: Percentage of income accruing to each fractile
decilee or quartile) of the population
Indicator 3: Percentage of children aged 1-5 years in groups
less than 80% weigth-for-age, 90% height-for-age and
80% weight-for-eight
Indicator 4: Percentage of under-nourished population
Indicator 5: Infant and child mortality rate
Indicator 6: Percentage of the population in villages/communities
with at least one health auxiliary
Indicator 7: Adult literacy rate
Indicator 8: Primary school enrolment and completion rates
Indicator 9: Percentage of rural households with specified
housing facilities
Indicator 10: Percentage of population living in villages/communities
with access to potable water supply, public health services
and primary schools
Indicator 11: Percentage of number and areas of holdings by size
groups and tenure
Indicator 12: Percentage of heads of rural households without land
Indicator 13: Average wage rate of agricultural labourers
Indicator 14: Rate of un-employment and under-employment
Indicator 15: Percentage of landless agricultural labourers to
the population economically active in agriculture
Indicator 16: Percentage of rural households receiving
institutional credit
Indicator 17: Percentage of the economically active population
engaged in non-agricutural activities in the rural areas
Indicator 18: Number of rural (including agricultural)
extension personnel per 1,000 holdings/households
Indicator 19: Per capital Agricultural GDP
Indicator 20: Cultivated and harvested agricultural land
Indicator 21: Annual rate of population growth


4.1 Improvement of statistical programmes 40
4.2 The role of specific censuses and surveys 41
4.3 Integrated programmes of censuses and surveys 45
4.4 A minimum programme of statistical development
for monitoring poverty alleviation 46


5.1 Introduction 48
5.2 Statistics on the role of women in agriculture 48
5.3 Statistics on rural landlessness 49
5.4 Statistics on disabled persons 50

APPENDIX I List of Supplementary Indicators 52



1.1 Preparation of the Guidelines

1.1.1 The Programme of Action adopted by the World Conference on Agrarian
Reform and Rural Development (WCARRD), 1/ recommended under Section ID (i)
dealing with monitoring and evaluation tFat countries undertake to:

collec: on a regular basis quantitative data and develop
appropriate indicators on a number of specific items pertaining to
the progress of agrarian reform and rural development;

establish bench-marks relating to the indicators for the years
around 1980; and report on changes pertaining to these indicators
at every other FAO biennial Conference.

1.1.2 The Programme of Action also recommended that the UN organizations,
with FAO as the lead agency, consider the adoption of specific measures to
assist countries in the above-mentioned tasks.

1.1.3 These guidelines have been developed in pursuance of the above
recommendations. They are meant to assist countries in developing
socio-economic indicators for monitoring and evaluation of agrarian reform
and rural development, as part of their regular statistical, planning,
project and programme implementation activities, in applying them at regular
scheduled intervals. Such indicators would also constitute the basis for
countries' reporting to the FAO Conference on the WCARRD follow-up.

1.1.4 The present guidelines have benefited from the comments of countries
and the UN agencies on the earlier list of socio-economic indicators
prepared in 1980, from the results of pilot studies on socio-economic
indicators conducted in 26 developing countries and the recommendations of
regional expert consultations held in each of the four developing regions.

1.1.5 Subsequently, the provisional list of indicators was made available
to countries for the preparation of their reports on progress in agrarian
reform and rural development to the biennial FAO Conference in 1983 and
1987. The final guidelines were then submitted for comments to the UN
agencies through members of the ACC Task Force on Rural Development and
these comments have been incorporated, as appropriate, and to the extent
possible in the present document.

1.1.6 Some useful information and experience was obtained from all the
above activities which resulted in further improvements in the scope and
purpose of the guidelines. Mainly due to special efforts made by countries,
with some assistance from FAO, several pilot studies found a large majority
of indicators included in the provisional list to be appropriate and they
were able to compile them. It was also found that many countries had

1/ FAO. Report of the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural
Development Rome, 12-20 July, 1979.


increased the socio-economic indicators compiled between 1983 and 1987 for
reporting to the FAO Conference. However, the effort was extremely varied
from country to country; with the lack of disaggregated data by urban/rural
areas and by socio-economic groups for most countries reporting.

1.1.7 Most of The indicators that could not be compiled were therefore
excluded from the list of primary indicators and the emphasis was placed on
the long-term development of disaggregated data for effective monitoring and
evaluation. Apart from their use in compiling the indicators, the
guidelines are seen, therefore, as a means of promoting the improvement of
statistical programmes in the countries.

1.1.8 Thus, the guidelines advocate a practical and cost-efficient method
for developing and applying key indicators of rural poverty and improving
statistical programmes until the full range of primary indicators has been
covered. They propose a step-by-step approach for developing socio-economic
indicators programmes in the countries and improving them through the
implementation of long-term integrated programmes of censuses and surveys
and administrative records. The guidelines have been made as consistent as
possible with other international standards on social statistics and
indicators. They remain flexible and adaptable to national requirements and
conditions, so that in implementing them, the special circumstances of
individual countries should be fully kept in mind.

1.1.9 The main users of guidelines are senior and middle level
statisticians and planners in national statistical and planning offices
responsible for :he development of statistics and indicators for monitoring
and evaluation of rural development and for other uses in policy analysis
and planning. Some of their contents could be relevant for the design,
monitoring and evaluation of individual projects and programmes, and should
be fully utilized for this purpose, whenever appropriate. The guidelines
can also serve as a training instrument in social development programmes and
as a programming instrument for non-governmental organizations working in
different countries.

1.2 Basic Principles and Objectives of WCARRD

1.2.1 The WCARRD Programme of Action states that the primary objectives of
rural development are the "eradication of poverty, hunger and malnutrition.
Other contributory objectives include growth with equity, national self-
reliance (especially in food), ecological harmony and the conservation of
finite resources. In pursuing these objectives, the participation of the
intended beneficiaries is as important as the material results.

1.2.2 The WCARRD has also enumerated various developmental objectives and
targets to be achieved by the countries. The most important among them are:

(a) Reduction of rural poverty;

(b) Elimination of conditions of severe undernutrition;

(c) Provision of minimum levels of public services in rural areas;

(d) Expansion of employment opportunities with fair wages,
particularly for the landless;


(e) Improving productivity levels and income, particularly of small
farmers and self-employed groups;

(f) Increasing agricultural and food production with a view to meet
nutritional needs;

(g) Increasing self-reliance, especially in food production;

(h) Achieving food security, especially for the poor; and

(i) Increasing public resources allocated to rural areas.

1.2.3 The WCARRD Programme of Action has identified six programme areas
for achieving its policy goals and objectives. They are:

(a) Access to land, water and other natural resources;

(b) Access to inputs, markets and services;

(c) People's participation;

(d) Integration of women in rural development;

(e) Development of non-farm rural activities;

(f) Education, training and extension.

1.2.4 The WCARRD objectives and strategies to achieve them provide a
framework for developing and compiling relevant socio-economic indicators.
While there may be a great deal of agreement on the objectives, countries
are likely to differ on the policy measures adopted to meet them. The
selection of these measures depends on existing socio-economic conditions
and the overall development strategy; for example, the relative priority
given to agricultural as against industrial development, the priority given
to agricultural exports as against production for domestic consumption etc.
Therefore, the selection of policies and hence of indicators depends on the
situation in each country, and in applying the guidelines, it is of vital
importance to keep into consideration the special circumstances and
conditions of particular countries.

1.2.5 The above objectives and the policy and programme areas are
discussed in Section 2.1 showing their linkages with a wide range of
possible indicators. The indicators actually selected pertaining to
particular areas of concern are presented in the lists of primary and
supplementary indicators in Table 1 and Appendix 1, respectively. The
explanations of the primary indicators are given in Section 3, and the
development of statistical programmes to generate the required data is
discussed in Section 4. The final section discusses statistics relating to
special population groups including women, the rural landless and the
disabled persons.


1.2.6 Although monitoring and evaluation may seem self-evident terms, some
discussion of them is essential. 2/ In the present context, monitoring is
concerned with the continuous or periodic assessment of the extent to which
progress is being made in achieving national objectives and targets of
agrarian reform and rural development. It is usually concerned with the
assessment of the implementation performance of a programme to ensure that
input deliveries, work schedules, targeted outputs and other required
actions are proceeding according to plan.

1.2.7 Evaluation is a process for determining, as systematically and
objectively as possible, the relevance and effectiveness of action
programmes and their results in achieving national agrarian reform and rural
development objectives. It is concerned with determining the overall
effects and impact of rural development policies and programmes on specified
objectives and on particular socio-economic groups, with necessary feedback
to policy formulation and decision-making.

1.2.8 As the indicators are intended to assess the extent to which the
whole gamut of national objectives in agrarian reform and rural development
are achieved, it is necessary to adopt a broad analytical approach in their
use. While socio-economic indicators are usually considered as key,
strategic or summary measures of socio-economic change, the emphasis here is
placed not on the construction and analysis of indicators per se, but on
studying the full body of the underlying data to determine structural
changes and relationships and the explanatory factors behind such changes.

1.3 Scope of the WCARRD Socio-Economic Indicators

(a) social statistics in the context of FAO concerns

1.3.1 In an earlier FAO study dealing with social statistics 3/, the broad
term "food and agriculture" was broken down into at least three distinct but
overlapping sub-systems: (i) the agricultural system or sector, covering
the production and distribution of agricultural products; (ii) the food
system, covering the supply, distribution and consumption of food; and,
(iii) rural development, which is a spatial dimension, that cuts across the
above two systems and is concerned with the levels of living and welfare of
the rural, and more precisely, of the agricultural population.

1.3.2 Each of these sub-systems has a rather distinct focus, covers not
necessarily the same population groups, and is related in different ways
with other parts of the overall socio-economic system. At the same time,
all the three have a common core in the production and distribution of food
and agricultural products.

1.3.3 While agricultural development is concerned with improvements in
farm structure, productivity and incomes of the agricultural population, and
with increased participation of farmers in agricultural development, all of

2/ The United Nations ACC Task Force on Rural Development, Guiding
Principles for the Design and Use of Monitoring and Evaluation in Rural
Development Projects and Programmes, 1984. PP. 13-14.
3/ FAO. Social Indicators and Social Statistics in the Contexts of FAO
Concerns. ESS/MISC/78-5, Rome, 1978.


which are a necessary part of rural development; rural development goes
beyond the specific concerns of the agricultural sector. It covers the
promotion of non-farm rural activities, the improvement of rural infra-
structure and community facilities and the strengthening of rural
organizations and institutions, all of which also contribute to agricultural
development and provide a stable base for agriculture.

1.3.4 The WCARRD socio-economic indicators pertain to agrarian reform and
rural developmen-, which do not limit themselves to the agricultural sector.
They are not necessarily intended to cover the other two sub-systems,
although both these two sub-systems are involved in rural development.

(b) comparison between WCARRD and the UN social indicators

1.3.5 The development of the WCARRD socio-economic indicators has adopted
a deductive approach, by which the aims and objectives of WCARRD areas of
concern are firs: identified and the indicators developed to cover these
areas. This is -hen followed by requirements for improving the statistical
programmes to generate these indicators as part of a long-term effort. In
the case of the UN social indicators, 4/ an inductive approach has been
followed, starting with the development of a system of social and
demographic statistics, a wide range of social indicators is suggested based
on the statistics available. They exhibit a general concern while the
WCARRD indicators reflect more specific concerns of rural development and
poverty alleviation; and are directly linked to policy requirements.

4/ See UN

Social Indicators:
Statistical Papers

Preliminary Guidelines and Illustrative
Series No. 63. New York, 1978.




2.1 Description of WCARRD Objectives and Policy Areas

2.1.1 It is essential to discuss briefly some of the WCARRD objectives
listed in Section 1.2 in relation with the development of indicators and to
show the linkages between the two. This will also facilitate the selection
of a limited set of primary indicators that are most appropriate for
monitoring povery alleviation, while at the same time meeting the desirable
properties of indicators presented in Section 2.2.

2.1.2 Reduction of rural poverty is the key objective of the WCARRD also
covering several interrelated objectives that are discussed below. Poverty
is defined not only in terms of income and measured by indicators on poverty
lines and income distribution, but also in terms of the state of physical
well-being as determined by the lack of satisfaction of certain basic needs,
including nutrition, health, education, housing and access to public
services and resources. The above areas of concern are measured by a wide
range of "physical" indicators, each representing a certain element of the
phenomenon. These indicators should be used together as a set in poverty
monitoring, even if they are correlated, since each one of them may be
affected by a different policy action. Priority is given to direct measures
of poverty as reflected by the state of well-being, rather than the indirect
measures based on the consumption of goods and services.

2.1.3 In the case of nutrition the objective is the elimination of
conditions of severe under-nutrition. While malnutrition is the key
manifestation of extreme poverty, it is not independent of other states of
poverty, such as those discussed below. Indicators on low weight and low
height of children are direct measures of the state of extreme
under-nutrition and hence of poverty; while those based on food consumption
would measure malnutrition only indirectly, since other factors interact
with food intake to produce malnutrition.

2.1.4 The improvement vc the health status of the population and the
provision of health care are among the key objectives under Health. In the
case of health status, indicators on infant, child and maternal-mortality
rates are directly related to the state of well-being, and hence poverty.
Life expectancy at birth, is a more composite measure of meeting
physiological basic needs, but this indicator requires an adequate data
base. In the case of health care indicators on access to health services
and health auxiliaries and other professional health personnel also been

2.1.5 Education provides individuals with fundamental knowledge, skills
and values to participate fully in the economic and social life of a
society. Educational attainment, as the state of well-being is related to
productivity and incomes and to the adoption of good health and nutritional
standards, all of which are useful in alleviating poverty. The direct
measures of educational attainment are adult literacy rate and the level of
educational attainment. Some indirect indicators on the provision and
results of educational services are primary and secondary school enrolment
rates and completion rates, respectively. Other indicators suggested for
poverty monitoring cover the nature of the educational service, i.e. primary


education as terminal education or preparatory for secondary education and
the different types and forms of vocational and technical education or
skills available, and the percentage of primary school students absorbed
into these two fields.

2.1.6 Good housing is conducive to good health and the general well-being
of rural communities. The indicators suggested for monitoring poverty are
the of rural households in good dwellings, with water, electricity and
sanitation facilities, the last being particularly indicated for minimum
levels of housing facilities; and the percentage of the population occupying
living quarters at density of three or more persons per room and also that
is homeless.

2.1.7 Provision of minimum levels of public services is measured by
accessibility (rather than availability) since the concept of accessibility
provides a direct link between levels of living and the policy instrument
for providing such services. The indicators covered are the accessibility
of communities/villages to potable water supply, public health services and
primary schools; to all-weather roads, means of public transport and
electricity; and to rural post offices, telephones, agricultural services.

2.1.8 Increasing productivity and incomes, particularly of small farmers
and increasing agricultural and food production to meet nutritional needs
are two closely related objectives for poverty alleviation. Interest is
also focused on the impact of agrarian reform and rural development
programmes on increased agricultural production. The indicators covered
under these objectives, are production and yields of main crops,
agricultural area improved by drainage, irrigation, etc., number of
livestock species per economically active person and fertilizer consumption
per hectare, to be tabulated separately for small farmers. Data on crop
yields should be supplemented with measures showing trends in food and cash
crop production.

2.1.9 Increasing public resources allocated to rural areas entails
allocating a large share of public (and private) resources for rural
development, mainly through investment in infrastructure, health and
education. The indicator suggested is the percentage of public expenditure
on agriculture to be extended to cover expenditure on social programmes in
the rural areas.

2.2 Desirable Properties of Indicators

2.2.1 Socio-economic indicators must adequately describe the status of
socio-economic phenomena and reflect changes over time. More specifically,
the WCARRD mandate calls for socio-economic indicators that can guide the
governments to implement structural changes and to monitor and evaluate the
progress in agrarian reform and rural development. In fulfilling these
conditions, indicators should have the following properties:

(i) they should be relevant to the components of socio-economic
development being measured so as to provide the necessary and
sufficient information for use by policy-makers and planners;

(ii) they should be valid, i.e they must measure accurately the
phenomenon they are supposed to measure;


(iii) they should be objective and verifiable, which means that the
measure should be the same if adopted by different people
under similar circumstances;

(iv) they should be sensitive enough to monitor changes in a

(v) they should be feasible as measured by accessibility and

(vi) they should be timely in the sense that they should be made
available as soon as possible after the collection and
processing of the data;

(vii) they should be simple enough to be understood by
non-specialists even if their construction is based on
complicated analytical procedures.

2.2.2 It is sometimes useful to have more than one indicator, in a broad
area of concern, such as poverty alleviation, so that weakness in one
indicator can be offset by strengths in alternative indicators. Where valid
and direct indicators are not available, it is desirable to develop "proxy"
indicators that can be used in the place of direct indicators.

2.3 Levels of Disaggregation

2.3.1 Socio-economic indicators need to be disaggregated for guiding
national decisions and implementation of programmes in agrarian reform and
rural development for improving the conditions of disadvantaged groups. In
order to identify and describe the characteristics of different types of the
rural poor, indicators relating to components of rural poverty need to be
disaggregated by socio-economic groups, age and sex.

2.3.2 Differen: socio-economic classifications of individuals, especially
of the economically active population are used in various statistical
fields. But their applications will vary from country to country depending
on specific indicators requirements and the need to relate data from various
sources. The classifications of individuals by employment status and
occupation have been found to be the most useful in serving this role.
Thus, socio-economic classifications can be based entirely on these
characteristics or can also take into account other factors such as
educational status and income. The main classification categories are the

i) Occupational/sectoral groups (economically active in: agri-
culture, fishery, forestry, etc.) 1/

ii) Employment status (employer, own-account worker, employee,
unpaid family worker) 2/

iii) Activity status (employed, unemployed, economically non-active)

2.3.3 The above classifications of individuals can be extended to provide
socio-economic groups of households. This is achieved by classifying each
household in terms of the economic activity characteristics of its head or
its principal earner, as the reference person. Households whose reference


persons are economically inactive are classified separately. Household
classifications can also be based on household income and/or expenditure or
on fractile groups of income; but such classifications are more of
analytical interest, than of a priori identification of households.

2.3.4 The classification on the basis of socio-economic groups could be
expanded or simplified to suit the purpose of analysis and data
availability. For example, employment status may broadly be divided between
agricultural and non-agricultural; and agricultural labour classified
according to those with land and those without land. Special attention
should also be given to the separate inclusion, in the classification of
particular groups such as small farmers, tenants, landless labourers and

2.3.5 Since the objective is also to evaluate the impact on agricultural
development of agrarian reform and rural development; it may be useful to
include classifications by form of organization or legal status comprising
private households, holdings, corporations, cooperatives and state farms.

2.3.6 Classification of population data by age group and sex is essential
to study socio-economic phenomena, particularly as they relate to the aged
and children. Such detail helps policy-makers to identify which age groups
are disadvantaged and requiring special attention in the programme of

2.3.7 Whilst -here are varying needs for detailed age and sex
classifications among different subject areas 3/, the United Nations has
recommended the use of the following classifications, reflecting
main groups of general policy interest : under 1 year, 1-4, 5-14, 15-19,
29-44, 45-59, 60-69 and 70 years and over. The 1 to 4 years of age is a
widely used age group to distinguish young children; 15-24 years (with
subdivisions at 15-19 and 20-24 years) distinguishes the youth and the
transitional period from schooling and family dependency to employment and
family formation. An age break at 45 is useful for distinguishing the
reproductive and post reproductive ages of women, as well as general periods
of the adult life cycle characterized by relatively different patterns and
rates of change in labour force, household and marital characteristics and
child dependency. The e iderly aged 60 and above are divided into two
groups, aged 60-69 to represent a relatively active and self-sufficient
period, and 70 and over, when health, disability, income and social issues
are likely to become more pronounced.

2.3.8 When data are collected on a household basis (such as ownership and
operation of agricultural holdings, income and consumption or access to
credit), it is important to disaggregate the data, by sex and type of head

1/ ILO. International Standard Classification of Occupation (ISCO) Revised
Edition. Geneva, 1969 and
UN. International Standard Industrial Classification of all Economic
Activities (ISIC). Series M, No. 4 Rev. 2, New York, 1968.
2/ ILO. The International Classification of Statistics of Employment Status
(in preparation).
3/ See: UN. Provisional Guidelines on Standard International Age
Classifications. Series M No 74, United Nations, New York 1982.

- 10 -

of household, since female-headed households represent a different
disadvantaged group from male-headed households with respect to needed
policies and structural changes.

2.3.9 The majority of population in most of the developing countries live
in rural areas; it is therefore essential that the data for compiling the
indicators cover the rural population and be disaggregated between urban and
rural areas. Various criteria are used in defining urban/rural
classifications in the different countries. It is advisable to use
urban/rural classifications that are appropriately defined and conform to
national practices as adopted in population censuses.

2.3.10 Countries whose urban/rural classifications cannot easily be
defined, as in the case of the insular Caribbean and other similar regions
should be treated separately; and for such countries greater use should be
made of geographical or regional classifications.

2.3.11 The disaggregation of data by geographical regions (agro-ecological
zones, administrative regions, districts, etc.) will help in identifying and
diagnosing regional and local problems as well as in the formulation and
implementation of appropriate remedial policies and programmes.
Disaggregation of data by administrative regions are concerned with
variables affected by public policy, while that by agro-ecological zones
concerns variables which depend on resource endowment and environmental

2.4 Selection of Socio-Economic Indicators

(a) primary indicators

2.4.1 The socio-economic indicators provided in these guidelines are
listed as primary and supplementary as already mentioned in paragraph 1.2.3.
The primary indicators listed in Table 1 comprise a comprehensive set,
directly related to objectives and policies of the WCARRD Programme of
Action and therefore are of crucial importance in monitoring and evaluating
agrarian reform and rural development. Most of the data for generating
these indicators are reported to be available in a number of countries,
which could be disaggregated or classified according to relevant categories,
for analysing distributional concerns of equity and poverty alleviation.

2.4.2 The primary indicators are grouped according to WCARRD goals and
areas of concern. One notable omission in the list of primary indicators
are those related to people's participation which includes also women's
participation. The indicators on people's participation have not yet been
developed to a fuller extent and hence some suggestions along these lines
have had to be relegated to the supplementary list. As more work will be
undertaken in conceptualizing and operationalizing participatory indicators,
a few indicators will have to be added to the list of primary indicators.

2.4.3 It must be noted that not all the primary indicators may be relevant
or meaningful to a particular country so that countries will have to choose
among them and substitute or supplement them as necessary.

(b) "core" indicators

2.4.4. A selection is made from the primary indicators of a smaller number
of "core" indicators that are crucial for monitoring poverty alleviation and

- 11 -

are also relevant to most countries and feasible from the data collection
point of view. The "core indicators" cover

Table 1. List of Primary Indicators




*1. Percentage
per capital
*2. Percentage

of population in households with
income below the poverty line
of income accruing to each
(decile/quartile) of the


*3. Percentage of children aged 1-5 years
groups less than:
80% weight-for-age
90% height-for-age
80% weight-for-height
*4. Percentage of under-nourished population




Access to
community services

*5. Infant and child mortality rate
6. Number of health auxiliaries

*7. Adult literacy rate
8. Primary school enrolment and

per 1,000


9. Percentage of rural households
specified housing facilities, e.g.
piped water
electricity and
sanitation facilities

*10. Percentage of population living in
villages/communities with access to:


potable water
public health services
primary schools

* The indicators marked with an asterisk are the "core" indicators for use
in monitoring poverty alleviation.


- 12 -










*11. Percentage of number and area of agri-
cultural holdings by size groups and tenure
*12. Percentage of heads of rural households
without land
*13. Average wage rate of agricultural labourers
14. Rate of un-employment and under-employment
*15. Percentage of landless agricultural
labourers to the population economically
active in agriculture

16. Percentage of rural households receiving
institutional credit

17. Percentage of the economically active
population engaged in non-agricultural
activities in the rural areas

18. Number of rural (including agricultural)
extension personnel per 1,000 holdings/

19. Per capital agricultural GDP
20. Cultivated and harvested agricultural land
a) As percentage of total agricultural
b) Per capital (total population)
c) Per capital (agricultural population)

21. Annual rate of population growth

* The indicators marked with an asterisk are the "core" indicators for use
in monitoring poverty alleviation.

- 13 -

(c) "supplementary" indicators

2.4.5 The list of supplementary indicators is provided in Appendix 1. As
can be seen, the supplementary list covers additional indicators which may
be necessary and useful for furthering the analysis of agrarian reform and
rural development. They are grouped under the broad goals of WCARRD, namely
growth, equity, and people's participation, while the primary indicators in
Table 1 are classified according to areas of concern.

2.5 Coverage of WCARRD Policy Areas

2.5.1 The list of primary indicators is prepared keeping in view the need
to cover most of the objectives and programme areas of WCARRD. However, the
omission of participatory indicators has already been mentioned. Those
provided as a supplementary list in Appendix 1 refer to indicators on
membership in formal and informal organizations, on people's participation
in local decision-making bodies and on participation in the design,
monitoring and evaluation of rural development programmes. The integration
of women in rural development will be dealt with by the primary and
supplementary indicators in so far as they are disaggregated for that
purpose. A discussion on improving statistics and indicators on women in
agriculture and rural development is given in Section 5.2.

2.5.2 Other objectives which may be particularly relevant in certain
countries, but for which indicators have not been listed comprise:
increasing self-reliance, especially in food; self-sufficiency; food
security and ecological balance and the conservation of resources.
Increasing self-reliance, is a broad concept covering all aspects of
production, income, consumption and trade. It is essential to develop
indicators reflecting the household food supply/utilization balance, to
measure the proportion of food produced, sold on the market, purchased with
income, and consumed, in relation to requirements and the size of household
food stocks, at different periods of the year. Distinction should also be
made between the subsistence part of the output and the monetized part.

2.5.3 Self-sufficiency is a narrower concept than self-reliance. It
refers to the extent to w1Jch the domestic production of certain foods meets
total consumption requirements. It may assume varying importance in
different countries, e.g. owing to the need and ability to import food
during periods of drought and crop failures. The indicator used for this
purpose is the self-sufficiency ratio, i.e. the proportion of domestic
production of staple food to the amount of food consumed (or food required
to meet the nutritional requirements of the population). Similar ratios can
also be calculated at the household/holding level, to measure the
self-sufficiency of small farmers.

2.5.4 Food security, especially for the poor, relates to the provision of
adequate supplies of food, at reasonable prices, and their fair and
expeditious distribution during periods of shortages. Therefore, in order
to monitor the situation of the poor, indicators on household food
production, supply, utilization, disposal and marketing, preferably
disaggregatd by seasons and by size of holdings and on prices of food crops
are required. Since the long-term objective of food security is improvement
in productivity, employment and income, especially of the small farmers and
landless labourers, the indicators on productivity, e.g. crop yields,
employment and income included in these.guidelines would be useful for
monitoring long-:erm food security in the rural areas.

- 14 -

2.5.5 Ecological balance and the conservation of resources entail the
development of indicators on the state of the environment, especially in
ecologically sensitive areas, in association with UNEP. The WCARRD
objective is to meet the needs of the rural poor for housing, wood and fuel
by means which are compatible with resource conservation and renewal. The
indicators suggested are planted forest and net forested areas (reforested
area net depletion) as percentage of forested area, forest area as
percentage of total land and fuelwood consumption per capital. Other
important ecological criteria could include relevant measures of land
alienation through abuse or other losses (salination, erosion, conversion to
urbanization, mining, etc).

2.6 Types and Ordering of Indicators

2.6.1 In order to supplement the indicators on access to land and on the
nutritional well-being of subsistence farmers and the rural poor, indicators
on land scarcity (percentage of arable land in use to total potential arable
land) and on food production instability (estimated as the coefficient of
variation of per capital food production over time) have been suggested. In
the case of small-scale fisheries, in countries where this is practised,
efforts should be made to cover indicators on fish production and
consumption per capital, cross-tabulated by income groups. It may be noted
that the indicators included in the list of primary indicators together with
their disaggregation, cover a broad spectrum of policy goals and activities,
which are ordered and classified differently to serve specific purposes in
monitoring and evaluation.

(a) impact indicators

2.6.2 Indicators 1 to 10 are the first priority indicators, covering
various policy areas, that can be used to monitor progress towards equity
and poverty alleviation. These indicators are ordered roughly according to
the listing of the main objectives of the WCARRD Programme of Action
(Section 1.2). They cover sequentially the WCARRD priority areas for which
countries were requested to establish bench-marks and report changes
pertaining to these indicators, at every other FAO biennial conference 4/.

2.6.3 The above indicators relate specifically to components of levels of
living, namely income and consumption, nutrition, health, education, housing
and access to community services. These are listed under the heading "Goals
and Areas of Concern". These components follow roughly the ordering used in
the original UN study on definition and measurement of standards and levels
of living. 5/ Owing to the importance attached to problems of poverty and
malnutrition in :he WCARRD report, policy areas pertaining to income and
nutrition, and hence the related indicators, have been listed first. Thus,
the indicators which are referred to as impact indicators are listed roughly
according to their importance and sensitivity in determining the impact on
poverty alleviation, especially on the rural poor.

4/ FAO. Report of the World Conference on Agrarian Reform and Rural
Development. Rome 1979, p. 6.
5/ See for example: UN Report on International Definition and Measurement
of Standards and Levels of Living. E/CN/299, New York, 1954.

15 -

(b) indicators having a bearing on impact

2.6.4 The second group (Indicators 11 to 18) relate to, and are listed,
according to the policies and programme areas of the WCARRD Programme of
Action (Section 1.2). These are.considered as instrumental variables for
attaining the objectives of poverty alleviation, as measured by the first
group of indicators. They can therefore be classified as indicators having
a bearing on impact. Those in the third group (Indicators 19 to 21) are the
background aggregate growth indicators and are meant to serve as useful
background information for use in analysing progress in agrarian reform and
rural development. In the case of population growth additional indicators
on net international migration and internal migration are included in the
Appendix. These would be enhanced by the inclusion of the dependency ratio
and other indicators pertaining to the age and sex distribution to give an
idea of demographic trends, disaggregated by urban/rural areas, etc.

- 16 -



Indicator 1 Percentage of population in households with per capital income
below the poverty line

3.1.1 General Description: This indicator aims at quantifying the extent
of absolute poverty prevailing in a country. There is a wide range of
historical and current literature on poverty and its measurement, and only
some of the recent publications will be used in discussions presented

(a) concept of absolute poverty

3.1.2 The concept of absolute poverty refers to the absence of access to a
minimum basket of goods and services deemed necessary for bare physical
survival; such as food, clothing and shelter. It attempts to specify levels
of absolute deprivation on the basis of norms that identify the minimum
requirements considered adequate to satisfy basic needs. In measuring
absolute poverty, the basic requirement norms determining the poverty line
can be set in terms of either (i) the minimum acceptable satisfaction for
each group of needs or (ii) the level of income or expenditure at which the
households can be assumed to satisfy these needs. 1/

3.1.3 the method adopted here (the second approach) attempts to relate the
whole range of minimum basic needs requirements to the level of income or
consumption required to satisfy these needs. Unlike the first alternative,
this approach has the advantage of synthesizing needs and satisfaction in
one composite indicator based on income. A poverty line can thus be defined
as the minimum level of household income that can buy a basket of goods and
services to satisfy the household's basic needs. Ideally, the minimum basic
needs items should be itemized in terms of consumption of food, clothing,
shelter, etc. Services are often excluded on the understanding that they
are provided through the public budget.

3.1.4 However, the consumer behaviour of households is such that even if
they had sufficient income, they may not purchase the basket of goods
required to meet their basic needs (e.g. with regards to nutrition and
health). Families living below the 'poverty line' are often found to
undertake certain non-food expenditures which many would judge as non-basic,
e.g. drink and entertainment. On the other hand, even with an income above
the poverty line, a family may not be able to purchase the essential goods
and services which are in inadequate supply or supplied by the public
sector, such as health, education, and water supply. The indicator based on
household income and consumption also ignores the important problem of the
distribution of food and other amenities within the family. 2/

1/ See for example: Altimir Oscar and Sourrouille Juan. Measuring Levels of
Living in Latin America: An Overview of Main Problems. LSMS Living
Standards Measurement Study, Working Paper No. 3. The World Bank,
Washington, 1980.
2/ Hicks, Norman and Streeten, Paul. Indicators of World Development, Vol.
7. Pergamon ?ress Ltd, 1979, p. 570.

- 17 -

(b) establishing a poverty line

3.1.5 Where a food-based method is used, the poverty line is identified
with the minimum cost of a food basket sufficient to meet certain minimum
requirements for dietary energy (calories) and sometimes also for proteins
- per capital, per day-calculated from the nutritional requirements of
individuals in different sex-age groups. 3/

3.1.6 Alternatively, the poverty line is fixed at the per capital household
income/expenditure level at which an amount of food corresponding to the
minimum energy requirement is consumed. This approach makes use of the
relationship between food consumption (in terms of calories) and income/ex-
penditure and avoids the costing of various basic needs items. However,
since the method does not measure the level of income at which the
households would meet their basic needs, it is not preferable to the method
discussed here based on the cost of minimum food and non-food items.

(c) method based on food and non-food baskets

3.1.7 In calculating the minimum cost of the food basket sufficient to
meet the minimum nutritional needs, the normative food basket selected
should take into account the actual availability of each type of food in the
country and the food habits of the population. It should include the main
food items consumed by the low income groups, but augmented to allow for
palatability, variety and better quality diet. Use should be made of the
average quantities of food consumed by middle income households, as obtained
from a recent household budget or food consumption survey; reducing or
modifying the quantities appropriately, in favour of a cheaper diet.

3.1.8 The valuation of the minimum basket of food items should use the
prices of different items as obtained from the latest household income and
expenditure survey. These prices are more apposite to the study of poverty
than the retail prices, as they cover a wide range of prices and food items,
they relate to specific population groups, and are self-weighting as between
different quantities and prices. However, since these prices may be
restricted to the year of the survey, retail and consumer prices should be
used, with suitable imputations for consumption of own produce, based on
market prices. The total value thus obtained is considered as the poverty
level income based on foor'items only.

3.1.9 To the above total should be added the cost of non-food items, e.g.
clothing, cleansing materials, fuel and light, etc., and there are several
methods that can be used for the purpose. The value of non-food items can
either be estimated directly for all individual items or can be deduced on
the basis that, the ratio of expenditure on non-food items to the
expenditure on food items is the same as that in household income groups

3/ FAO/WHO. Energy and Protein Requirements. Report of a Joint FAO/WHO/UNU
Expert Consultation. Technical Report Series 724. Geneva, 1985, and also
FAO, Manual on the Practical Applications of Human Energy Requirements
(in preparation). Although reference is made in several sections of the
guidelines to nutritional requirements, it should be noted however that
the thinking regarding the application of human requirements,
particularly energy requirements, is in the process of change.

- 18 -

whose expenditure on food is above the minimum food budget. The total value
of the food basket and the non-food basket should be added to arrive at the
poverty line. The proportion of households below the poverty line can then
be estimated from the frequency distribution of per capital household income
or expenditure, using simple interpolation methods. There are also the more
detailed methods that can be used, depending on the specification of poverty
lines for different sex and age composition of households and the
availability of disaggregated data on income. 4/

3.1.10 Finally, mention should be made of the method based on energy
requirements and the relationship between food consumption and income.
According to this approach, data on the average per capital calories consumed
by each per capita/income expenditure class are plotted on the vertical axis
against each per capital income and/or expenditure class on the horizontal
axis. The intersection of the minimum energy (calorie) requirement with the
calorie income-graph determines the household poverty level income.

(d) some problems of the use of poverty lines

3.1.11 It will be seen from the above descriptions that the establishment
and use of poverty lines based on income are subject to many problems in
addition to those already discussed in paragraph 3.1.4 above. These arise
due to the difficulties in (a) identifying acceptable criteria for the
choice of the minimum consumption basket, (b) choosing the representative
items within each consumable group, (c) selecting appropriate prices to
value the minimum consumption basket and (d) in fixing a standard norm of
the per capital energy (calorie) requirements per day, owing to the great
variation in calorie needs by age, sex, body weight and height, activity,
climatic conditions etc.

3.1.12 The poverty line measures do not consider how far families are below
the poverty line. A way of overcoming this problem is to use the Sen Index,
which proposes the weighting of individuals below the line on the basis of
how far they fall below the poverty line, thus combining poverty line and
income distribution approaches. 5/

3.1.13 Sources of data: Household income and expenditure surveys and food
consumption and nutrition surveys. These surveys should also cover the
items on subsistence ciosumption both for the estimation of private
consumption and incomes of the rural households. Ideally, such income and
expenditure distributions should be available on a per capital basis, be
disaggregated by size and composition of households and be constituted in a
reasonably wide range of household income classes.

3.1.14 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural; geographical regions; socio-
economic groups.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

4/ See for example: Mujahis, G.B.S. and Jackson, D.E.S. The Measurement of
Poverty in Third World Countries. Proceedings of the International
Statistical Institute, New Delhi.
5/ Hicks, Norman and Streeten, Paul op.cit.; and Sen, A.K. Poverty and
Famines. Oxford Clarendon Press, pp. 26-28 and 185-194.

- 19 -

3.1.15 Uses: This indicator is used for monitoring progress in poverty
alleviation, for determining disparities among the rural poor and other
disadvantaged groups, and for formulating plans, programmes and targets for
alleviating poverty. The particular groups to which special attention
should be given are small farmers, tenants, landless labourers and
fishermen. The two major items, poverty line and particular groups, should
always be kept in mind when preparing the tables.

Indicator 2 Percentage of income accruing to each fractile decilee or
quartile) of the population

3.2.1 General description: While reduction of absolute poverty, as
measured by the previous Indicator 1, is the key objective of WCARRD,
concerns with equity require that measures of relative poverty should also
be included. The concept of relative poverty adopts norms of deprivation
that take into account the average level of satisfaction of basic needs in
the population as a whole. This concept, which is relevant to problems of
equality and inequality in the distribution of income, relates to the
situation where the households falling in the bottom group of the income
distribution can be regarded as poor (in relative terms).

3.2.2 The above indicator measures the share of different groups of the
population to the total income. It should be supplemented by data on the
average per capital income of each fractile group, to determine the average
income of the households falling in the bottom group of households relative
to the average income of the population as a whole.

3.2.3 Household income or expenditure data can be converted to fractile
(quartile or decile) distributions by various methods, including arranging
households in ascending order of their total income. Detailed discussion of
concepts and methods used in compiling data on income distribution can be
found in the publications listed in the footnote. 6/

3.2.4 Sources of data: Household income and expenditure surveys and
administrative records. The main problems relate firstly to the sources
from which the data are collected and secondly to the reliability of the
data provided. The administrative records (tax records, social security
records) which can provide data on income are still subject to limited
coverage in most rural areas. They are also often evaded or remain
inapplicable for certain categories of the population and may not give data
on the socio-economic characteristics of persons whose income is reported.

3.2.5 Household income and expenditure surveys are therefore the most
comprehensive source of data on income and expenditure. Apart from the
tendency to under-estimate income, there are also the problems of imputing
values for the valuation of certain items of income and consumption,
especially in the case of subsistence production. Although these should be
valued at existing market prices, these may vary from place to place and

6/ UN. Provisional Guidelines on Statistics of the Distribution of Income,
Consumption and Accumulation of Households. Studies in Methods, Series
M. No. 61. New York. 1977
UN. A Survey of National Sources of Income Distribution Statistics.
Statistical Papers, Series M, No.72. New York. 1981.

- 20 -

from time to time. Imputation of money value is applicable in areas with a
money economy, but not in areas where subsistence agriculture is predominant
and where no meaningful market prices exist. There are also the problems of
imputing rent for owner-occupied dwellings, which require the use of
equivalent rents in the area and of wages in kind which should be imputed
according to the opportunity cost of the recipient in the market. 7/

3.2.6 Several conceptual and methodological problems have been discussed
above on the use of income data for compiling Indicators 1 and 2 (see
paragraph 3.1.4). The concept of income has been shown to be deficient
because raising income alone may not be sufficient to alleviate poverty in
view of inefficiencies in the consumption patterns of the poor and of the
absence of essential goods and services, in certain rural areas. Also, in
many rural areas, the concept of income may not be relevant nor applicable
in determining the poor and the data on income may not always be available.

3.2.7 It is therefore essential to supplement the indicators based on
income with measures determining the deficiencies in the satisfaction of
other basic needs. These measures should always be included, especially
when issues of equity in growth are considered, to provide the socially
complementary measures to income. A broad approach is adopted, whereby
poverty is measured not only in terms of income or assets, but also
including other basic needs such as nutrition, health, housing, education
and access to services and resources. The indicators relating to these
items are discussed in various sub-sections below.

3.2.8 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural, geographical areas,
socio-economic groups.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.2.9 Uses: This indicator is useful in monitoring and evaluating progress
in poverty alleviation and achieving equity in income distribution.

Indicator 3 Percentage of children aged 1-5 years in groups less than
80% weight-for-age
90% height-for-age
80- weight-for-height 8/

3.3.1 General Description: These indicators refer to the percentage of
children with unsatisfactory or low anthropometric measurements, i.e.
children whose weight-for-age, height-for-age or weight-for-height are below
cut-off points set at 80% or 90% of the respective median values for healthy
children. The three measures of nutritional status have all been included
in the list of primary indicators because they have different advantages and
disadvantages; and generally relate to different policy issues.

7/ See for example: Altimir Oscar and Sourrouile op.cit.
8/ WHO. Development of Indicators for Monitoring Progress towards Health
for All by the Year 2000. Geneva, 1981. pp. 64-66.

- 21 -

(a) Height-for-age (stunting) reflects the physical stature and is
therefore an indicator of long-term nutritional influences and
is not sensitive to short-term or seasonal changes in food
intake and health; but genetic variations in height have to be
considered when making comparisons.

(b) Weight-for-height (wasting) is an indicator of current
nutritional status and reflects the extent to which the
individual is actually malnourished. The indicator is
sensitive to short-term changes and hence is frequently less
easy to use. It is, nonetheless, the most appropriate,
especially in situations where age cannot be accurately

(c) Weight-for-age (under-weight) reflects both stunting of growth
and consequently long-term under-nutrition, as well as current

3.3.2 An international (or national) reference population is used for
establishing the reference growth patterns for weight-for-age, h-
eight-for-age and weight-for-height. WHO has recommended that the best
available data in this regard are those established by the United States
National Centre for Health Statistics. These general international norms
may be used for children up to five years of age, because the influence of
ethnic or genetic factors on young children is considered insignificant. In
statistical terms the cut-off points are fixed at two standard deviations
below the median value of the respective frequency distributions of healthy
children (reference population). These however usually work out to the 80%
or 90% level suggested. 9/

3.3.3 In certain cases country specific reference growth curves have been
developed based on the weights and heights of healthy children, such as
those of the upper class families. However, the creation of such standards
is expensive and time consuming.

3.3.4 Sources of data: Nutritional status surveys or food consumption and
other household surveys providing anthropometric data on children. The data
on weight should be collected 2-3 times a year to cover different seasons.
The data collection requires measures to be adequately standardized through
the adjustment of scales before weighing and the suitable training and
rotation of field personnel to minimize the effects of individual biases.
10/ It is also necessary to ensure that children's ages are correctly

9/ The International Dietary Energy Consultative Group (IDEG) is presently
preparing an operational definition of "chronic energy deficiency" based
on adult weights and heights expressed as Body Mass Index (BMI =
wt/Ht2), considered to reflect accurately the nutritional stress
situation of the population. The use of BMI and the definition of
appropriate cut-off points have yet to be finalized.
10/ See WHO. Measuring Change in Nutritional Status. Geneva, 1983.

- 22 -

3.3.5 Level of dissagregation: Urban/rural; geographical regions; socio-
economic groups; sex; age.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.3.6 Uses: These indicators have been found to be closely correlated
with rural poverty. They are particularly useful in assessing the
nutritional status of children, diagnosing the nutritional situation in the
country and in monitoring the impact of nutritional programmes on target

3.3.7 A high percentage of low height-for-age could be an indicator of
inadequate food and/or poor environment, thus pointing to the need for
preventive and curative programmes; and a high percentage of low weight-for-
height, on the other hand, reflects exclusively current or recent
under-consumption or disease requiring short-term remedial action. The
percentage of low weight-for-age reflects the cumulative effects of a
sustained past episode or episodes of under-nutrition ("chronic" under-
nutrition) and a recent episode of under-nutrition ("acute"
under-nutrition). It is thus a composite indicator and more difficult to
interpret than the other two in terms of programmes to correct the problem.
These indicators should be supplemented by indicators based on food
consumption, as in Indicator 4, below.

Indicator 4 Percentage of under-nourished population

3.4.1 General description: This indicator gives an estimate of the
percentage of the population in households with per capital energy (calorie)
consumption below certain minimum requirements. A basic manifestation of
poverty is under-nutrition which the indicator seeks to measure. The
under-nourished population refers to the population in households consuming
food below a specified minimum level. The quantity of food consumed is
usually expressed in terms of calories and the calorie consumption data
refer to the household's food intake (rather than individual intake) as
obtained from a national food consumption and expenditure survey.

3.4.2 The minimum level of calorie consumption is based on energy
requirement calculated according to age, sex, body weight and activity level
of the population. The appropriate cut-off points reflecting the minimum
level of calorie requirements should be used. 11/

11/ FAO/WHO. Energy and Protein Requirements. Report of a Joint FAO/WHO/UNU
Expert Consultation. Technical Report Series 724. WHO, Geneva 1985.
FAO. Manual on the Practical Applications of Human Energy Requirements
(in preparation). Practical application of the approach suggested in
the Report mentioned above are not yet available but under preparation.
For information on the approach taken for estimating the size of global
under-nutrition problem see: The Fifth World Food Survey. FAO, Rome,
1987. The Annex of this publication discusses the conceptual and
methodological issues underlying the estimation of the incidence of

- 23 -

3.4.3 The conversion of survey data on quantities of food into calories
should be made through the application of appropriate food composition
tables. The calorie consumption data should be classified by household size
and composition to construct this indicator. The total population of
households with per capital calorie consumption below the minimum require-
ments should then be estimated from the available survey data.

3.4.4 Sources of data: Household food consumption surveys, household
budget and expenditure surveys and individual dietary surveys. Food
consumption and individual dietary surveys are direct sources of data on
food consumption. The concept of food consumption used is that of food
intake, which relates to that part of the food consumed in quantities
converted into edible portions minus the leftovers not consumed.
Information on meal attendance by household members and guests is usually
collected in order to make adjustments to arrive at valid per capital
household averages. The individual dietary surveys have the added advantage
of enabling the derivation of an estimate having the individual rather than
the household as the unit of classification.

3.4.5 Household budget and expenditure surveys can also be valuable
sources of data for this indicator. They can do so provided they include
information on quantities of food acquired or consumed, together with the
consumption of own produce in sufficient detail to enable their conversion
into calorie and nutrient content. Since the concept of food acquired that
is used does not allow for changes in household food stocks nor for food
losses and other wastage, the data collected would measure food consumed
only if these changes and losses are insignificant, a situation which would
hold for the low income groups in the developing countries.

3.4.6 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural; socio-economic groups
(disaggregation by sex would only be possible if an individual dietary
survey was conducted).

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.4.7 Uses: This indicator is useful in monitoring changes in the numbers
of under-nourished population, in determining the socio-economic
characteristics of the under-nourished for planning suitable intervention
measures, in evaluating "the effects of policies and programmes on the
under-nourished and in formulating food and nutrition policies for
eliminating conditions of severe under-nutrition.

Indicator 5 Infant and child mortality rate 12/

3.5.1 General description: The infant mortality rate is defined as the
number of deaths among infants less than one year old per 1,000 live births
in the same period. The child mortality rate is defined as the number of
deaths among children of age 1-4 per 1,000 of the children in the same age
group. In keeping with the guidelines' emphasis on education and on the
integration of women in rural development, the above indicators should,
wherever possible, be classified by the levels of the mothers' educational

12/ WHO. Development of Indicators for Monitoring Progress towards Health
for All by the Year 2000. Geneva. 1981. pp. 34 and 67.

- 24 -

3.5.2 Sources of data: Population censuses, demographic surveys and vital
registration systems.

3.5.3 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural, sex, educational level of the

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.5.4 Uses: Both the infant and child mortality rate reflect the magnitude
of health-problems such as poor hygiene and malnutrition. Infant mortality
depends to a great extent on the level of mother's education, the level of
antenatal and postnatal care of mother and infant.

Indicator 6 Percentage of the population in villages/communities with at
least one health auxiliary 13/

3.6.1 General description: This indicator attempts to measure the
availability of primary health care facilities in a country. This is the
minimal level of health services to which a population should have access.
Also key health auxiliaries and similar categories of health personnel are
known to constitute important determinants of health progress in the rural

3.6.2 It is essential, however, to extend the coverage to professional
staff such as physicians, dentists, pharmacists, etc., since in a number of
developing countries, these may also be working at the primary health care
level. The professional groups should be chosen by each country in the
light of its specific situation.

3.6.3 The definitions of health auxiliaries; health care workers, nurses
and trained midwives should conform to standards laid down by WHO. Where
national definitions are used, these should clearly be indicated. It is
customary to compile this indicator as the number of health personnel of
specified type divided by the corresponding population and multiplied by
1,000; but in that form the indicator may not adequately measure access to
health care by the rural poor, since a rise in the number of health
auxiliaries may simply indicate improved health facilities in the not-so-
poor regions. When used in this form, disaggregation of the data by
geographical regions is mcut essential. The indicator 6, suggested above is
therefore recommended as the most appropriate.

3.6.4 Sources of data: Administrative records supplemented, where
necessary, by special enquiries to cover those outside the national health
service. Other sources are population censuses, but these have the
disadvantage of furnishing data at long intervals of about 10 years.

3.6.5 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural; geographical regions, type of
health personal.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

13/ Ibid.

- 25 -

3.6.6 Uses: Together with the health status indicators, the indicator on
the availability of health personnel can be used to evaluate changes in
health conditions brought about by the provision of specified health
personnel and related services in the rural areas.

Indicator 7 Adult literacy rate

3.7.1 General description: The standard definition of literacy is the
ability both to read and write. Adult literacy rate measures the literacy
of the adult population, i.e., population of age 15 years and above. This
is calculated as the ratio of the literate persons, of age 15 years and
above, to the total population of the same ages, expressed as a percentage.
14/ Supplementary data can also be provided by 5 year age-groups of the

3.7.2 Sources of data: Population censuses, demographic surveys and
general household surveys. The above sources may however yield low quality
data especially in a situation where the concept of "literate" is given
different interpretation by interviewers and respondents, where there are no
clear instructions for determining the cut-off point between the population
that is literate and that which is illiterate and where little effort is
made to verify the responses either through more probing questions or the
testing of the respondents.

3.7.3 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural; geographical regions; socio-
economic groups; sex.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.7.4 Uses: The adult literacy rate is an essential indicator for
monitoring the educational attainment of the population. It is useful for
determining the progress of adult development personnel in acquiring
literacy, thus enhancing their participation in the development process.
This indicator is crucial for monitoring progress towards the achievement of
universal literacy by 2000 AD, as stipulated in the WCARRD report.

Indicator 8 Primary school enrolment and completion rates 15/

3.8.1 General description: UNESCO has defined enrolment rate as the number
of children enrolled in primary schools per 100 children of primary school
age, i.e., the eligible birth cohort, and completion rate as the number of
children who completed the final year of education at the first level as a
percentage of children at this level. Primary education refers to the first
level education including primary classes attached to secondary schools.
The primary school enrolment rate (together with secondary level school
enrolment rate) provides a measure of access to education in the country and
primary school completion rate measures the results and the efficiency of
the educational services.

14/ UNESCO. Recommendations Concerning the International Standardization of
Education Statistics, Paris 1976.
15/ For definitions see: UNESCO. Recommendations Concerning the Inter-
national Standardization of Educational Statistics, Paris 1976.

- 26 -

3.8.2 There are difficulties in defining the relevant age group for
enrolment because a country may have different age ranges at the primary
school level which may even overlap with the secondary school level. For
international comparisons, UNESCO has recommended that primary school
enrolment be related to the population aged 5 to 14 years, inclusive, 15/
the age groups chosen, however, should reflect local practices regarding age
limits, e.g., 5-9, 6-10 and 7-12 years. Furthermore, the length of primary
education differs from country to country, from class IV to class VIII or
even class IX. However, for the purpose of compiling this indicator, classes
V/VI should be used as acceptable limits.

3.8.3 The enrolment rate could be defined in two ways, namely:

(a) gross enrolment rate: defined as the number of students in the
primary level of education per 100 population of the primary
school age-group. The rate thus obtained may even exceed 100
because of the inclusion of students in the numerator who are
outside the primary school age range;

(b) refined enrolment rate: expressed as the number of children of
the primary school ages enrolled in primary schools per 100
children of the same age group. This refined enrolment rate
should generally be the one used in compiling this indicator.
Enrolment rates by age groups can also be computed where
reliable data are available.

3.8.4 Sources of data: Administrative records of the education ministries,
population censuses and household surveys. While the bulk of enrolment
statistics are obtained from administrative records of educational institu-
tions concerned, household surveys can be used to provide more detailed
information on enrolment and on socio-economic characteristics of the pupils
and their households that are lacking in school enrolment records.

3.8.5 International comparability of indicators on enrolment rate will no
doubt be affected by the official age used for initial school enrolment
(which in some countries is 5 and in others 7 years or more). It may also
be affected by the existence of pre-primary and religious schools which may
or may not be covered in official statistical records. Countries should
specify their official age for school enrolment and the types of schools
covered in presenting data on enrolment rates.

3.8.6 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural; geographical regions;
socio-economic groups; sex, age.

Frequency: Annual.

3.8.7 Uses: The indicator on primary school enrolment rate is essential
for monitoring progress towards the attainment of primary education and
hence the alleviation of illiteracy in the rural areas. It can be used in
assessing the access of the population to primary education facilities and
hence is helpful in the formulation of policies and programmes to enhance
such access. A UNRISD study has shown that the age group 12-17 years was
more discriminate in measuring progress than the age group 6-11 years. 16/

16/ UNRISD. Research Data Bank of Development Indicators, Vol. IV. Geneva,
1977 pp.83-84.

- 27 -

The indicator on primary school completion rate is useful for measuring of
primary education and for planning.

Indicator 9 Percentage of rural households with specified housing

piped water
sanitation facilities 17/

3.9.1 General description: These indicators measure the proportion of
rural households having piped water, electricity and sanitation facilities
respectively. The indicators should be compiled as the percentages of rural
households having each of such facilities to the total number of rural
households. Piped water refers to water laid on from a community-wide
system or from individual installations (pressure tanks, pumps etc.) for
distribution under pressure. Information regarding rural households with
piped water should include piped water within the household, piped water
outside the household, but within 100 metres distance from the living
quarters and other specified sources of water supply. Electricity supply to
the household refers to the connection from the main source to at least a
point available to the household. Sanitation facilities refer primarily to
the installation of toilet facilities. The data should indicate the type of
facility available in the living quarters and whether it is for the
exclusive use of the occupants or is shared.

3.9.2 Sources of data: Housing censuses and surveys, population censuses
and household surveys. The provision of data on housing and housing
facilities from the combined population and housing censuses is useful since
apart from its comprehensiveness, it will enable the cross-tabulation of
data on housing facilities against the demographic, social and economic
characteristics of the household members.

3.9.3 However, since such data may be required at shorter intervals than
ten years, household surveys conducted at more regular intervals, may be
used to incorporate data on housing facilities. Collection of housing data
is also best provided through such surveys, since unlike the limited time
available for census interviews, a great deal of time and persuasion may be
required before the respondents can allow enumerators to enter and inspect
their living quarters. Moreover, some related data on housing conditions
and the distance of certain facilities may require the use of objective
methods of measurement, which can only be readily adopted in a sample

3.9.4 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural; geographical regions; socio-
economic groups; sex of head of household.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.9.5 Uses: The above indicators can be used for assessing the
availability of key housing facilities, as essential aspects for the

17/ See: UN. Principles and Recommendations for Population and Housing
Censuses. Statistical Papers, Series M, No. 67. New York. 1980. pp.

- 28 -

attainment of adequate living conditions in the rural areas. The
sub-indicator on households with sanitary facilities is particularly useful
in documenting minimum required levels of housing facilities, especially in
relation to health conditions. When analysed together with other welfare
indicators, the results would show the extent to which the availability of
given housing facilities are associated with improved levels of living;
especially with health and nutrition.

Indicator 10 Percentage of population living in villages/communities with
access to:

Potable water supply
Public health services
Primary schools.

3.10.1 General description: This set of indicators provides a crude measure
of accessibility of essential public services. The objective is to estimate
the number or proportion of the population expected to use a specified
service. Accessibility should be specified appropriately for each item and
this will depend on the definitions of accessibility used in a given
country. For this purpose, criteria based on distance or time taken to
reach a particular service are sometimes used. These will vary for
different parts of the country and for the different services used.
(Examples are services located in the village, within a distance of 10
kilometers or within one hour of walking time.) Countries should specify
the criteria used to determine such accessibility for different services,
when compiling the individual indicators.

3.10.2 Potable water is safe water, defined as including treated surface
water and untreated but uncontaminated water such as that from boreholes,
springs and sanitary wells. Public health services include centres
organized for administering a variety of preventive health and immunization
work and, to some extent, for curative purposes also. Primary schools are
those which normally provide education for children at the first educational
level (ISCED category 1), which begins between ages 5 and 7 and lasts for
about 5 to 6 years.

3.10.3 The above specifications of indicators based on whole communities or
villages is only a rough aiinimum requirement. It cannot be concluded from
the existence of such services in certain communities that the needs of all
individual households in the community are met. The more reliable and
extended requirement is to determine the accessibility of these services by
different socio-economic groups of households within the broader
communities. In this case, particular attention should be given to the
accessibility of the rural poor and other disadvantaged groups such as small
farmers and landless labourers to these essential services. This can best
be done through detailed household surveys collecting data at the individual
household level.

3.10.4 Sources of data: Administrative records, population and agricultural
censuses. The indicators can be compiled on the basis of administrative
records or of pre-enumeration census of villages undertaken before a major
population or agricultural census. A list of villages or communities and
their population sizes will be required for compiling these indicators.
Detailed tabulations should also be provided by size-classes of villages or
communities and frequency distributions prepared on accessibility (distance
or time range) of villages and their corresponding populations.

- 29

3.10.5 The building up of suitable and complete records for compiling these
indicators will entail the piecing together of various elements of
information, the estimation of the missing data and in certain cases, the
carrying out of special field enquiries. There is need to instil awareness
of the data requirements for compiling these indicators, so that suitable
statistical records with corresponding population estimates can be provided
on a regular and systematic basis.

3.10.6 Level of disaggregation: Geographical regions; size class of village
or community.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.10.7 Uses: The indicators can be used in setting targets and in
monitoring progress towards the objective of providing essential services to
rural communities. Since the provision of these services contributes to
improved levels of living of communities receiving them, the indicators
suggested can serve as proxies to the measurement of levels of living and
welfare. These are the services the government can provide; and hence the
indicators will be useful in formulating policies and programmes for
expanding them.

Indicator 11 Percentage of number and areas of holdings by size groups and
tenure 18/

3.11.1 General description: This indicator measures the share of each size
class of agricultural holdings in the total number and area of holdings.
The size classes of holdings are determined according to the agricultural
census conducted in the country.

3.11.2 Within each size group the area should be shown by type of tenure,
the main forms of which include: (a) area owned or held in owner-like
possession (b) area rented from others (c) area operated on a squatter basis
(d) area operated under tribal or traditional tenure forms and (e) area
operated under other forms of tenure. These and all other concepts and
definitions relating to this indicator are contained in the Programme for
the World Census of Agriculture. It may be possible also to show tenureship
by the individual holders and a supplementary indicator could be compiled on
the percentage of persons who hold ownership titles to the land, also to be
disaggregated by sex.

3.11.3 Since the WCARRD emphasis is on the small farmers, it is essential
to determine the holding sizes considered as "small farmers" and to provide
suitable definitions and explanations of criteria used in each country. In
the case of the Programme for the World Census of Agriculture, the area of a
holding includes agricultural land (arable land, land under permanent crops
and land under permanent meadows and pastures) and all other land on the
holding. The indicator relates to land holdings operated, but a similar
indicator can be calculated showing the distribution in land ownership. The
disaggregation of these indicators by sex of holders and of heads of
households is meant to highlight the position of land operation or ownership
between the sexes.

18/ See: FAO. Programme for the 1990 World Census of Agriculture. Rome,
1986. pp. 17-22.

- 30 -

3.11.4 Sources of data: Agricultural censuses and surveys and land records.
The indicator based on operational size of holding is computed from data on
the size distribution of holdings obtained from agricultural censuses and
surveys, while for data on ownership, land records are the main source.

3.11.5 Level of disaggregation: Geographical regions; type of tenure; sex
of head of household/older.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.11.6 Uses: This indicator is used to assess the impact of agrarian and
land reform and of rural development programmes on land distribution. The
indicator is a valuable measure of access to land which is often a key
determinant of poverty; but to obtain a full picture, it should be analysed
together with indicators on rural landlessness (indicators 12 and 15.)
Access to land and other natural resources and the influencing systems of
ownership and tenure are key determinants of rural economic structure,
income distribution and the general conditions of rural life.

Indicator 12 Percentage of heads of rural households without land

3.12.1 General description: This indicator provides a measure of the degree
of access to land of the rural heads of households. A rural head of
household has no access to land if none of the members of the household
operate any agricultural holding 19/. This concept is sometimes extended to
cover households which own or operate a small piece of land. In this case, a
clear indication of the cut-off point should be given. In countries where
livestock holdings are prevalent, additional tabulations will be required
giving the numbers of households without land, according to the number of
livestock held.

3.12.2 The degree to which this indicator is relevant and its
interpretation meaningful in various situations will vary from country to
country. In some countries the increase in the number of households without
land can be considered to be a positive improvement, depending on the
availability of off-farm employment. However, in most developing countries,
there is often no alternative employment outside agriculture; and the
provision of agricultural land to the landless households is a crucial
objective of agrarian refuom and rural development.

3.12.3 Sources of data: Agricultural censuses and surveys, population
censuses and household surveys. Agricultural censuses and surveys can
provide data on heads of rural households without land, provided suitable
instructions are given for collecting this information when preparing the
list of agricultural holders. The population census would also be a useful
source; but the census questionnaires and schedule of interviews are often
so compact that it may not be possible to add more probing questions for
identifying the landless households.

3.12.4 Level disaggregation: Geographical regions; sex of head of

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

19/ FAO. Collecting Statistics of Agricultural Population and Employment.
Economic and Social Development Papers 7. Rome 1978.

- 31 -

3.12.5 Uses: The indicator supplements the previous one by covering the
households without access to land. It is an indirect measure of the
incidence of poverty amongst those who have no alternative employment or
occupation in the rural areas and can also be used for planning employment
creation programmes, both on- and off-farm. The dissagregation of data by
male and female heads of households is crucial for determining the extent to
which female-headed households are without land; and hence the ways in which
agrarian reform legislation and programmes are improving their situation.
The indicator also shows the extent to which rural women are precluded from
their traditional role of cultivating food crops. Women's involvement in
food production has been considered essential for improving both the food
security and the nutritional status of their families.

Indicator 13 Average wage rate of agricultural labourers 20/

3.13.1 General description: This indicator is defined as the average gross
money value of wages in agriculture (cash and in kind) actually paid per
wage earner, before deduction of income tax and social security
contributions. It relates to real wage rates and not to wages fixed by laws
and regulations, collective agreements and other wage-setting decisions.
Salaried employees should not be included in the calculation of this
indicator. The primary indicators measuring equity in income distribution
such as Indicator 2 and more specifically the Giri Coefficient with
appropriate disaggregation, would supplement the indicator on "average wage

3.13.2 The coverage of agriculture should correspond to major division 1 of
the ISIC 21/. The definition of agricultural work is provided in the Pro-
gramme for the World Census of Agriculture. The indicator is compiled from
data on the average wage level of agricultural workers in money terms for a
specified period (e.g. wage rate per day; per week; per month). It should
allow for seasonal changes and be supplemented, where possible, with
estimates of total hours/days worked. Payment in kind should also be
included and the valuing of such payment into monetary terms should be based
on local market prices.

3.13.3 Nominal wage, whether as an absolute figure or an index number, may
not reveal the real differences in terms of purchasing power since prices
may differ greatly over time and between regions. Therefore, real wage
index number should also be computed for comparisons over time, i.e. the
index of nominal wages has to be deflated (divided) by the consumer price
index for the same period.

3.13.4 Sources of data: Agricultural censuses/surveys and labour force
surveys. In the traditional agricultural sector, data on agricultural wages
and on hours/man days worked can be obtained from agricultural, household
and labour force surveys. The survey should be planned to cover all the

20/ See: ILO. International Recommendations on Labour Statistics. Geneva.
1976. pp. 37.72. 7
21/ UN. International Standard Industrial Classification of All Economic
Activities. Statistical Papers, Series M. No. 4, Rev. 2. New York- 1968.

- 32 -

3.13.5 In the modern agricultural sector, data on wages and man days of
work can be obtained from payrolls and other records of large-scale
agricultural holdings. The data collected from the traditional and modern
agricultural sectors should adopt the same concepts so that they can be
combined to produce statistics for the agricultural sector as a whole.

3.13.6 Level of disaggregation: geographical regions, traditional/modern
sector, skilled/unskilled, permanent/seasonal labourers, sex.

Frequency: Annual for the current programme; periodic (once in
about five years) for the long-term programme.

3.13.7 Uses: The indicator measures inequity in average wages between the
agricultural and non-agricultural sectors, the traditional and modern
agricultural sectors, the geographical regions and between male and female
workers. It indicates the material status of wage earning agricultural
labourers, who are generally the poorest section of the agricultural
population. Where the wages are below the level necessary for meeting
minimum needs, the indicator will reflect the likely incidence of poverty.
Indices of agricultural wages over indices of consumer food prices can be
very useful in diagnosing the possible incidence of near famine conditions.
Hence prices are key factors in understanding rural poverty as measured by
the above indicators.

Indicator 14 Rate of un-employment and under-employment 22/

3.14.1 General description: The basic criteria for defining unemployment
can be given as follows:

(a) "Without work", i.e., not in paid job/employment or self
employment as defined;

(b) "Currently available for work", i.e., available for paid
employment or self-employment during the reference period; and

(c) "Seeking work", i.e., taking specific steps to see and/or
obtain paid employment or self-employment.

3.14.2 Where the majority of the labour force in rural areas is self-
employed such definition of unemployment may not capture the real
situation. For example, "seeking work" in some extreme cases may result in
complete suppression of that criterion. It is also necessary to ensure that
women's employment and unemployment are not under-estimated both when
collecting data, as well as in the data already available.

3.14.3 Under-employment (which is often considered a more serious problem
than unemployment in developing countries) exists when the employment of a
person is considered inadequate in terms of the time worked, productivity or
occupational skill. Under-employment is divided into two principal forms of
visible and invisible. Visible under-employment occurs when a person is
in employment of less than normal duration and is seeking or would accept

22/ ILO. Labour Force, Employment and Under-Employment. Report II of the
13th Conference of Labour Statisticians. Geneva, 1982. pp. 10-11.

- 33 -

additional work. Invisible under-employment is primarily an analytical
concept reflecting a misallocation of labour resources or a fundamental
imbalance as between labour and other factors of production. Characteristic
symptoms might be low income, under-utilization of skills and low

3.14.4 Sources of data: Population censuses, labour force surveys, and
administrative records. The above sources are all complementary and have
various advantages and disadvantages with regard to coverage and accuracy of
the data. Household labour force surveys cover all the employed, unemployed
and under-employed, and their relevant socio-economic characteristics.
Existing administrative records are still very limited and inaccurate for
use as sources of data on unemployment in most developing countries.

3.14.5 The adequacy, accuracy and comparability of statistics on
unemployment in the rural areas are greatly influenced by the concepts and
classifications used. The situation is more adverse in the case of women
who work mainly in agriculture, usually as unpaid family labourers (see
Section 5). The short time-reference of one week usually used in
determining the economically active, while suitable for minimizing memory
lapses and other response errors, has been found unsuitable for measuring
employment and unemployment in agriculture. These activities are subject to
major seasonal changes throughout the year. The normal working time and
employment and unemployment status of those engaged in agriculture may
change drastically during the year. A longer reference period of one year
has therefore been advocated for use.

3.14.6 The boundary line between economic and non-economic activities may
also be difficult to determine and there are several borderline activities
which do not easily fall into any one category, e.g. caring for animals,
food processing, fetching of water. There is the need therefore to expand
labour force surveys, to adequately incorporate the time spent in such
activities, using time-use surveys. The current practices whereby the
youth, under the age of 15 years are often employed in agricultural
activities also require the provision of separate data on employment and
unemployment for those below 15 years of age.

3.14.7 Levels of disaggregation: Urban/rural; geographical areas;
socio-economic groups; sex; age.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.14.8 Uses: The above indicators measure the prevalence of unemployment
and under-employment and the insufficient and unequal access to adequate
employment, as causal factors determining poverty and low productivity in
the rural areas. The data can be used for planning and evaluating
productive and remunerative employment creation programmes, with regard to
increasing incomes and levels of living of the unemployed.

Indicator 15 Percentage of landless agricultural labourers to the population
economically active in agriculture

3.15.1 General description: The indicator is computed by dividing the
number of agricultural landless labourers by the population economically
active in agriculture.

- 34 -

3.15.2 Since even agricultural labourers may have some land on which their
houses are built, and may be cultivating some crops around their homestead,
some cut-off point on the size of land held will have to be determined for
each country. For example, FAO in the study of landlessness 23/ allowed for
the homestead and some land to be included, as long as the latter does not
produce a yearly income which exceeds (i) one fifth of the poverty level
income or (ii) one-tenth of the per capital GDP in the country.

3.15.3 The economically active population in agriculture includes all
persons engaged principally in agriculture, forestry, hunting or fishing,
including agricultural labourers. It thus includes persons who work for
profit and persons who assist without pay in an income producing enterprise
of the family. Unemployed persons seeking part-time jobs are also
considered as members of the economically active population.

3.15.4 Sources of data: Agricultural censuses, population censuses and
labour force surveys. There are conceptual and methodological problems that
make it difficult to provide data on landless agricultural labourers from
the above sources. The concept of landlessness itself is difficult to
define since there is a continuum ranging from the near landless to the
landless. Some criteria similar to those given in the description of this
indicator should be adopted. Estimates of the landless from the agricultural
census have been found to be very low. This is because the census is based
on agricultural holdings and therefore may not cover the landless labourers
residing in non-agricultural households.

3.15.5 Suggestions for improving the agricultural census to provide data on
landlessness are discussed in sub-section 5.3. The population census
covering all households, both in the rural and urban areas, could furnish
reliable information on the landless agricultural labourers.

3.15.6 Level of disaggregation: Rural/urban areas, geographic regions.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.15.7 Uses: This indicator can be used in assessing the changes in the
proportion of landless labourers to the total economically active
population. Where the underlying data are also available by socio-economic
groups, they can give usei'ul clues on factors associated with landlessness,
for the formulation of policies to improve the situation (e.g., agrarian
reform programmes of land distribution and land resettlement for settling
the landless on land). The data should however be interpreted with caution
in situations where land reform is involved with the creation of state
farms; since the indicator would then suggest that land reform has increased

Indicator 16 Percentage of rural households receiving institutional credit

3.16.1 General description: The indicator is confined to institutional
credit only since the data on non-institutional credit are not readily
available in most countries; moreover, the use of non-institutional credit,
e.g. from merchants, moneylenders etc., may not be a positive objective to

23/ FAO. Report of the Expert Consultation on Landlessness: Dynamics,
Problems and Policies. Rome, October, 1985.

- 35 -

be pursued. Institutional credit means all credit (both in cash and in
kind) supplied by institutional agencies such as central/state/agricultural/
development banks, credit institutions, cooperatives, farmers' associations,
project authorities and housing finance institutions, building societies,
etc. Credit is normally expressed in money values, but credit in kind
should be valued by using appropriate market prices.

3.16.2 Sources of data: Records of various concerned institutions,
household surveys and farm management surveys. Housing surveys can provide
data on credit obtained to build or improve houses. Data on households
receiving institutional credit can be obtained from the administrative
records of institutions administering such credit. The data may be of
limited use where these records do not contain information on socio-economic
characteristics of households or individuals receiving credit, e.g. sex.
Also the data on holdings operated may be lacking, thus prohibiting the
disaggregation of the indicator by size of holdings, to reflect on the
situation of small farmers.

3.16.3 Level of disaggregation: Geographical regions; sex of head of
households; size of holding.

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.16.4 Uses: The indicator is useful in assessing the accessibility of
institutional credit to rural and agricultural households and especially to
the small farmers and women farmers. It reflects the re-orientation of the
practices of credit institutions and other delivery systems towards the
needs of rural households, especially the small producers.

Indicator 17 Percentage of the economically active population engaged in
non-agricultural activities in the rural areas

3.17.1 General description: The non-agricultural activities in the rural
areas are those defined in major divisions 2 to 9 of the International
Standard Industrial Classifications of all Economic Activities (ISIC). 24/

3.17.2 Sources of data: Population censuses and labour force surveys. The
population census can provide comprehensive data on the economically active
population. When an economically active person reports more than one
activity during the time reference, the activity in which the main
occupation was carried out is usually the one used in the census. Such data
may therefore fail to cover employment in non-agricultural rural activities
and hence in secondary and seasonal activities in which the bulk of rural
workers are often engaged, especially during the slack agricultural season.

3.17.3 Level of disaggregation: Geographical regions, sex and economic

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

24/ UN. Indexes to the International Standard Industrial Classification of
all Economic Activities. Statistical Papers, Series M, No. 4, Rev. 2,
Add. 1. New York. 1971. pp. 27-40.

- 36 -

3.17.4 Uses: This indicator is useful in monitoring the relative growth of
non-farm rural activities and the increase in off-farm employment opportu-
nities in the rural areas. It can also serve the purpose of planning large-
scale and small-scale cottage industries, the rural infra-structure and
rural works programmes. The indicator should however be used with caution,
preferably in combination with data on primary and secondary activities
since many workers hold dual occupations in agriculture and non-agriculture.
Moreover, fulltime non-agricultural workers carry out a small proportion of
total non-agricultural work.

Indicator 18 Number of rural (including agricultural) extension personnel
per 1,000 holdings/households

3.18.1 General description: Extension staff are all personnel in the
extension service 25/ (whether government, semi-government or private)
including field ana-supervisory personnel, irrespective of the level of
training, grade and location in the field. The subject-specific extension
staff are agricultural extension agents, health agents, family planning
workers, workers related to public order and safety, education, cultural and
recreation services, and to social welfare and economic services in the
rural areas.

3.18.2 The data required are the number of extension (including
agricultural) personnel (at a point in time) and the number of agricultural
holdings/households (at the same time). The indicator should be
disaggregated by sex of the extension agent in order to monitor the
objective of increasing female extension agents, since these are considered
more suitable for reaching the bulk of women producers.

3.18.3 Sources of data: Administrative records of government and private
agencies and population censuses. Government records need to be
supplemented with records of private and semi-private agencies that employ
extension workers, e.g. Sugar Research Institutes, Agriculture Produce
Boards etc. These records should be up-dated on a regular basis and made as
complete as possible. The population census would provide complete coverage
of various extension agents, both working in the public and private sectors.

3.18.4 Level of disaggregation: Geographical areas; sex of extension

Frequency: Periodic, once in about five years.

3.18.5 Uses: Extension services constitute an important instrument for
achieving progress in rural development and poverty alleviation. The
indicator serves as a measure for monitoring the exposure of rural
households to agricultural and development education, including the
dissemination of research findings for rural development. Together with
other relevant data, the indicator is useful for determining the
availability, adequacy and requirements for rural extension personnel, for
formulating and assessing the results of extension services in the rural
areas and for determining the contribution of extension activities to rural
development and poverty alleviation.

25/ FAO. Agricultural Extension Systems in Some African and Asian Countries.
Economic and Social Development Papers 46. Rome. 1984. PP. 23-25.

- 37 -

Indicator 19 Per capital Agricultural GDP

3.19.1 General Description: Agricultural GDP is a value aggregate measuring
the final result of agricultural production activity by resident producer
units. It should be compiled at producers' prices (net of trade and
tranpsort charges on commodities disposed of at farm-gate), net of indirect
taxes, less subsidies, thus yielding agricultural GDP at factor cost.
Further details on the concepts and approaches used for compiling
agriculture GDP and total GDP are given in the two references provided in
the footnote. 26/

3.19.2 To calculate per capital figures the agriculture GDP estimates are
divided by the total population or the total agricultural population. For
monitoring changes the above indicators should be calculated by using the
agricultural GDP at constant prices.

3.19.3 Sources of data: For estimating agricultural GDP results of all
current agricultural, forestry and fisheries surveys have to be used.
Difficulties are usually met in estimating components of the intermediate
inputs. Data on certain inputs, such as fertilizers, pesticides, soil
dressings etc., may be available from various public and private agencies.
Farm management surveys may also be used to provide relevant data, but these
surveys are often limited in coverage and may not be representative of the
country as a whole. The population census is the source of population data
for estimating per capital agricultural GDP. In the case of the agricultural
population, many censuses do not often relate household dependents to the
corresponding heads of households that are economically active in
agriculture. As a result, estimates of the agricultural population may not
be available from the census.

3.19.4 Level of disaggregation: Agricultural sub-sectors; geographical

Frequency: annual.

3.19.5 Uses: The agricultural GDP reflects the contribution of agriculture
to the national economy. It serves as a summary aggregate measure of the
development of the agricultural sector and therefore could be used to
provide background information regarding income distribution and alleviation
of poverty, the problems with which these guidelines are concerned.

Indicator 20 Cultivated and harvested agricultural land 27/

(a) As percentage of total agricultural land
(b) Per capital (total population)
(c) Per capital (agricultural population)

26/ UN. A System of National Accounts. Studies in Methods, Series F, No. 2,
Rev. 3. New York. 1968. pp. 94 and 233.
FAO. Handbook of Economic Accounts for Agriculture. Rome, 1974.
27/ FAO. Estimation of Crop Areas and Yields in Agricultural Statistics,
1982. Rome. p. 9.

- 38 -

3.20.1 General description: This is a measure of the country's existing
land resource base for agricultural production. Agricultural land includes
arable land, land under permanent crops, and land under permanent meadows
and pastures. Arable land refers to all land generally under rotation
whether it is under temporary crops, left temporarily fallow or used as
temporary meadows. In some countries, arable land also includes land under
permanent crops; in such cases separate indicators should be compiled for
cultivated and harvested land belonging to the two categories.

3.20.2 Area cultivated is the area tilled, sown or planted and usually it
is net for temporary crops and gross for permanent crops. Area harvested is
the area for which a crop has been gathered. The harvested area is counted
as many times as it is used for growing the crop during the year. The
indicator is calculated by taking the cultivated/harvested land as the
numerator and the total agricultural land as the denominator. It may be
useful to supplement the above indicator with a separate indicator on area
of arable land and land under permanent crops, as a percentage of total
agricultural land. Per capital values are obtained by dividing the total c-
ultivated/harvested land by the total estimated mid-year population and by
the total agricultural population.

3.20.3 Sources of data: Agricultural censuses; current agricultural surveys
and statistics; geographical or land use surveys and administrative records.
The agricultural census would provide the needed coverage, but such census
data exist only as bench-marks without providing any current estimates.
Cadastral and land use surveys often also provide adequate coverage, but
their results are frequently out-of-date. Administrative records and crop
reports of the agricultural field staff are a more regular source of current
statistics on cultivated and harvested areas in many developing countries.
Their accuracy is often dependent on the subjective estimates used, which
may be of different levels of reliability and on whether such estimates are
taken at the holding or locality level. Changes in concepts and methods
used from time to time, also often prohibit the provision of comparable
data. The improvement of data sources for compiling this indicator will
need to address all these problems.

3.20.4 Level of disaggregation: Geographical regions.

Frequency: Periodic, about once in five years.

3.20.5 Uses: The indicator and the various components can be used for
measuring the availability of cultivated land as a base for agricultural
production, especially in different geographical regions and also over time.
The ratio of cultivated land to total agricultural land determines the
intensity of cropping and the patterns of land use in various regions for
agricultural development planning. The per capital figures measure the
cultivated/harvested area, mainly relative to food supply and demand for the
total population and the density of the agricultural population on
cultivated land; this being the land from which the agricultural population
derives its means of livelihood.

Indicator 21 Annual rate of population growth

3.21.1 General description: The annual rate of population growth is
obtained by computing the difference between birth rates and death rates
(rate of natural increase) per 1,000 population in a year. The rate differs
from the other currently used indicator, namely the annual percentage

- 39 -

population increase, by the balance of net migration (i.e. number of
emigrants subtracted from the number of immigrants). The above rates are in
fact "crude" birth rates and "crude" death rates affected by variations in
the population age structure, which is not taken into account in calculating
these rates.

3.21.2 Sources of data: Population censuses and surveys; demographic
surveys and vital registration systems. The population census is the main
source of data on births and deaths and on other social, economic and
demographic factors, influencing population growth if no vital registration
exists in a country. Such vital registration systems in many developing
countries are known to be highly deficient in geographical coverage, often
being restricted to urban areas. Both the births and deaths are often
under-reported, thus requiring the use of adjustments.

3.21.3 In countries where sample registration systems are in operation,
more reliable estimates of vital rates can be obtained, since these combine
the advantages of the registration method and the more improved sample
survey methodology. In most developing countries, demographic surveys are
the more common sources of data on births, deaths, fertility, migration and
other vital statistics. However, these surveys also tend to underestimate
many vital events due to the biases encountered in collecting retrospective
data based on respondents' memories. Such biases can readily be minimized
and controlled in suitably planned surveys, whose time reference is better
suited to enabling households to recall such events (e.g. covering periods
between major historical events).

3.21.4 Level of disaggregation: Urban/rural; geographical regions.

Frequency: Annual.

3.21.5 Uses: The indicator on the rate of population growth, based on birth
rates and-death rates, can be used in formulating and evaluating population
policies and programmes for regulating population growth and in setting
targets to be achieved. The indicator is also useful in formulating
long-term social and economic policies. For example, the low rates of
population growth, due to rapid decline in birth rates will result in an
aging population; while the high rates of population growth due to reduction
in death rates will resuiL in a young population, with a large number of
dependents. Both these changes have significant socio-economic
consequences, which should be taken care of, well in advance.

- 40 -



4.1 Improvement in Scope and Coverage of Statistical Programmes

4.1.1 Statistics required for compiling indicators to meet the require-
ments discussed in previous sections, are still very limited or deficient in
many developing countries. The main deficiencies relate to the coverage,
frequency, timeliness, disaggregation and consistency of data. Meeting the
WCARRD needs for monitoring and evaluation has several implications or
requirements for statistical development, the most significant of which are
outlined below.

4.1.2 Improvements in national statistical programmes do not always
require additional resources. Some can be achieved by adopting conceptual
and methodological changes and improving the data processing and
presentation through the better utilization of existing staff and resources.
Others will no doubt entail the additional costs through the necessary
expansion and improvement of existing statistical programmes and the
introduction of new ones, until the full range of primary indicators is

4.1.3 There is the need to improve the scope and coverage of national
statistical programmes in order to adequately serve the needs of the
socio-economic indicators programme. This involves the extension of the
scope of these programmes to priority areas covered by the core indicators
outlined in Section 3 and the expansion of the geographical coverage to the
entire rural area of the country, including special population settlements
or population groups, e.g. fishermen's villages, nomadic and pastoral
populations. These are often omitted in regular data collection programmes,
and yet they may constitute the priority target groups. Requirements for the
coverage of all agricultural holdings have already been emphasized in the
previous section.

4.1.4 The regular, planned and funded collection of data is one of the
most important requirements for monitoring and evaluation. Structural
indicators obtained from Censuses, e.g. distribution of holdings, employment
status of the economically active population, do not change much within a
short period and hence these can be furnished at intervals of up to ten
years. Indicators on employment, income, nutrition and health are required
more frequently since they may involve rapid changes requiring policy action
and intervention. Therefore, the surveys from which these indicators are
obtained should be conducted more frequently, at least once in a period of
about 5 years. However, for certain phenomena, even the interval of 5 years
may be too long for effective monitoring. It is therefore essential to
select some relevant key items of data to be collected annually from a
continuing programme of surveys.

4.1.5 Improvements in timeliness, especially in the rapid processing and
release of census and survey data are also needed. This will ensure that
survey results are addressed to the current situation and can be put to
maximum use, before they become out-of-date. To achieve this objective, it
is necessary that preparations for data processing are started very early,
simultaneously with preparations for the census or survey so that data
processing procedures and facilities (manuals for data editing, tabulation

- 41 -

plans, related software and hardware, etc.) are ready and already tested by
the time the data collected are received. It is also necessary to provide
adequate computer facilities and trained staff during the preparatory phases
and to be available for the required time after the survey has been

4.1.6 The disaggregation of data by urban/rural areas, geographical areas,
socio-economic groups, sex and age is a major prerequisite for establishing
bench-marks on levels of living of the rural poor and for monitoring
progress towards poverty alleviation. The statistical implications of this
requirement are demanding, especially for countries with inadequate
statistical systems and capabilities. These involve samples that would
yield sufficiently precise estimates for classifications, cross-tabulations
and the frequency distributions required. The harmonization of concepts,
definitions and classifications among different censuses and surveys would
provide comparable data over time and facilitate linkages between various
data. Where the concepts and classifications used are compatible with
similar international standards, they would result in comparable data
suitable for inter-country analysis.

4.2 The Role of Specific Censuses and Surveys

4.2.1 Section 3 has given the full description of primary indicators and
the data sources from which they are obtained. These sources comprise
mainly agricultural censuses and surveys, population and housing censuses,
household surveys, administrative records and vital registration systems.

(a) agricultural censuses and surveys

4.2.2 The Programme for the World Census of Agriculture provides the basis
for agricultural censuses conducted in many countries at intervals of about
10 years. The census has the advantage of providing data by size and type
of holdings, and in the case of complete enumeration, by small areas of the
country. The census should be fully exploited to provide sampling frames
for more frequent inter-censal agricultural surveys and for developing an
integrated system of food and agricultural statistics.

(b) population and housing censuses

4.2.3 The population census has the advantage of providing a wide range of
social, economic and demographic data, by small divisions of the country. It
should also be used to provide socio-economic groups classifications for
disaggregating data; sampling frames for subsequent agricultural, household
and demographic surveys; and a comprehensive data base for compiling basic
indicators tables and for improving estimates of sample surveys.

(c) household surveys

4.2.4 Household income and expenditure surveys are the main sources of
data on components of levels of living and hence poverty; on variations in
levels of welfare among socio-economic groups, thus determining disparities
and inequalities; and on the changes taking place.

4.2.5 The concept of income to be used should preferably be total
available income (which is total household income less expenditure on own
production (input), direct taxes and social security contributions). The

- 42 -

components of both income from and expenditure on (input to) economic
activities performed in the household have to be considered.

4.2.6 Improvements in household income and expenditure surveys require the
conduct of surveys covering the entire year so as to eliminate seasonal
variations and to provide annual estimates of household income and
consumption. In order to improve the accuracy of income data, detailed
schedules on sources of income, allowing for probing questions should be
used and consistency checks made on data entries relating to household
income and expenditure.

4.2.7 Food consumption surveys include a wide variety, ranging from
household budget and expenditure surveys, in the course of which quantities
of food are covered, to specialized food consumption surveys for collecting
detailed information on household food intakes. The concepts and methods
used in various surveys determine the extent to which indicators on levels
of food intake in relation to requirements can be compiled.

4.2.8 In the case of household expenditure surveys, data on items of food
consumed are often not tabulated. Where quantities are available, these are
not always expressed in sufficient detail to calculate calories and nutrient
equivalents. It is therefore important to ensure that these problems are
overcome in household expenditure surveys aimed at providing data on the
above indicators.

4.2.9 The concept of food acquired instead of food consumed is often used
in household budget and food consumption surveys. Where the time reference
is short (about one week), the food acquired by the household will not
correspond to the household food intake; but where the time reference is
long, extending beyond the buying cycle, data on food acquired average out
to levels of food intake, over a number of similar households. Under these
circumstances, the average levels of food consumed can only be approximated
at the socio-economic group level, without allowing for the calculation of
frequency distributions of households' food intake, to estimate the
under-nourished population.

4.2.10 The integration of food consumption surveys in continuing household
income and expenditure surveys provides the best means of reducing survey
costs and providing time-siries data for monitoring and evaluation.

4.2.11 Labour force surveys can provide a wide range of data for compiling
indicators on the economically active population, on employment,
unemployment and under-employment and on wage rates and conditions of work,
by relevant characteristics of households and individuals. Since it is
useful to determine the adequacy of the household income (say, above the
poverty line) and hence the adequacy of employment, data on household income
should also be provided in a module attached to the labour force survey.
Alternatively, some relevant particulars on employment may be incorporated
in household income and expenditure surveys.

4.2.12 Three types of survey approaches have been distinguished 1/:

1/ UN. Handbook of Household Surveys (Review Edition). Studies in Methods,
Series F, No. 31, New York, pp. 112-117.

- 43

(i) specialized in-depth surveys to be conducted at intervals of
3-5 years, to provide bench-mark data and structural
information and to fix targets on the economically active

(ii) continuous surveys for monitoring the current employment
situation, also covering different seasons of the year;

(iii) multi-round integrated surveys, linking data on employment
with that on household expenditure, household enterprises,
farm practices etc.

4.2.13 Demographic surveys provide data for indicators relating to
population change, such as birth and death rates, and migration. Such
surveys may be conducted either separately or as part of the household
survey. Where single round surveys are conducted, the costs may be low, but
the data may be subject to large response errors. This problem will
generally be overcome by conducting multi-round surveys, with at least two
visits per year to the households, to record events that have taken place
between the two visits.

4.2.14 Data from demographic surveys are generally subject to large
sampling errors due to the rare events being reported. Demographic surveys
therefore require relatively larger samples than those stipulated for other
household surveys. The larger samples are also needed for providing
reliable data for cross-tabulations that may be used. Non-sampling errors
may also be high due to memory biases and other lapses inherent in recalling
past events. The use of suitable survey instruments and trained personnel
are perhaps the best means of overcoming these problems.

4.2.15 Health surveys can be used to provide data for compiling
health-related indicators, e.g. fertility, mortality, morbidity. Unlike
administrative records, these surveys provide useful socio-demographic
information on individuals that can be used to cross-classify these
indicators. However, such specialized surveys are still very limited in
developing countries and should normally be undertaken as part of the
household survey. A recent WHO study provides a useful list of health and
health-related topics that should be covered in a general household survey
in developing countries 2/-.

4.2.16 It will be seen from the broad range of household surveys discussed
above that most data required for compiling indicators on income,
consumption, and employment are generally subject to wide seasonal
fluctuations, resulting mainly from variations in agricultural activities in
the rural areas. Seasonality is therefore an important factor to be reckoned
with in designing rural surveys. Household surveys should be designed to
cover the major seasons of the year, while at the same time providing valid
estimates for the entire year. The adoption of a uniform time reference of
twelve months also has the advantage of interrelating different indicators
for various analytical purposes, e.g. income and employment.

2/ UN. The Role of NHSCP in Providing Health Information in Developing
Countries. NHSCP Technical Study No. 3. New York, 1983.

- 44 -

4.2.17 In order to meet these requirements there are two major approaches
that can be followed 3/:

(i) The same household samples are enumerated in all major seasons
of the year.

This method, while most reliable for monitoring seasonal
changes and can be used in preparing cross-tabulations of
various indicators and frequency distributions of the
individual households based on annual data, is nonetheless
liable to providing relatively larger sampling errors for the
total estimates of the population as a whole. This is mainly
due to the small samples of the households covered. It also
has the disadvantage of overburdening respondents, thus likely
to result in poor quality data.

(ii) Different household samples are enumerated in different seasons
of the year.

This method would provide reliable annual estimates of the
variable being investigated, as the samples would be relatively
large. With this method, however, annual data for individual
households are not available; hence no frequency distributions
nor cross-tabulations of indicators can be made available, at
the individual household level. Such similar tabulations can
however be prepared at the socio-economic group level, with
great loss in the information provided. The method, nonethe-
less, has the advantage of not overburdening the households
with survey interviews for a period exceeding that in which
they participate in a seasonal survey.

4.2.18 The second major consideration on the use of household surveys for
monitoring and evaluation depends on their frequency and integration in
continuing programmes of successive surveys. There are several
possibilities, which depend on survey resources and organizations available,
the statistical and operational efficiency to be attained and on the
intensity or level of integration required for analysing the results.

4.2.19 Two notable examples are:

(i) The conduct of an integrated programme of household surveys
covering a major subject on a continuous basis, e.g. household
expenditure, employment or agriculture. In this case, some
subjects, e.g. nutrition, health and education, are covered in
specialized modules, attached to the main survey.

(ii) The conduct of a series of survey rounds dealing with different
subjects in cycles of 3-5 years.

4.2.20 The two approaches mentioned above have several statistical and
operational advantages, depending on conditions prevailing in particular

3/ A compromise approach between the two extremes is the case where
rotating samples are used, with some sample households replaced in
certain seasons, while others are retained.

- 45 -

countries. For example, the first approach is more suited to monitoring
some key area of social and economic activity; while subsidiary topics are
also covered in survey modules, mainly to investigate their interrelation-
ships with variables contained in the continuing survey. The second
approach treats all topics equally and has the advantage of building solid
bench-marks and other structural data suited for in-depth analysis and
evaluation. There may also be some compromised intermediate survey
arrangements which would include some elements of the two approaches. These
are however beyond the scope of these discussions.

(d) administrative records and vital registration systems

4.2.21 Administrative records and vital
simplest and cheapest sources of indicators
the administrative process. However, these
improvement in the coverage and accuracy of


registration systems are the
data provided as by-products of
sources may require considerable
the data furnished.

Integrated Programmes of Censuses and Surveys

4.3.1 The regional expert consultations on socio-economic indicators
recommended the provision of disaggregated data and the conduct of more
frequent surveys to meet the needs of socio-economic indicators. They also
recommended that the development of national socio-economic indicators
programmes should be undertaken in a phased manner, in accordance with
varying needs and capabilities of countries.

4.3.2 To meet the above objectives, an integrated programme of
and surveys should be developed, the main principles of which

are the

(a) surveys should be conducted on a regular, rather than an ad hoc

(b) survey activities should be planned in an
provide maximum technical and operational

(c) programme support materials (e.g. sampling
equipment) ard the resources available for
contribute to subsequent surveys,

integrated way to
advantages, among

frames, manuals,
one survey should

(d) concepts, definitions, classifications and the sampling and
reporting units used in different surveys should be made as
compatible as possible.

4.3.3 To develop such an integrated programme, a review and appraisal
should first be made of existing national statistics and related statistical
programmes, capabilities and resources. Such a review should indicate
deficiencies in the available data and determine requirements for data
collection, compilation and analysis. It should then be possible to prepare
a long-term integrated programme of censuses and surveys and administrative
records, covering a period of about ten years.

4.3.4 In such a programme, survey activities should be planned together
and programmed well in advance, so that maximum use is made of the common or
interrelated aspects of the planned activities to achieve economy and
efficiency. The programme should allow for ad hoc surveys that may be

- 46 -

required to meet urgent needs. It should also exploit, to the fullest
extent, the advantages of a combination of survey design arrangements, such
as uni-subject surveys, multi-purpose surveys and multi-phase surveys 4/.

4.3.5 The written plan would include a detailed description of the data to
be collected, the time reference, units of enumeration and the general
methods to be used, the statistical activities to be undertaken in
successive years and their relationships, and the time schedule for
compiling, processing and disseminating the results. It is possible to
group the different types of data according to the types and frequency of
surveys from which they are obtained. The different elements and phases of
the surveys should be arranged in such a way as to achieve optimum results.

4.3.6 Thus, an integrated programme of censuses and surveys has several
advantages for the socio-economic indicators programme. The most prominent
are that it provides interrelated time-series data for monitoring progress
and for analysing possible causal relationships and other measures of
association among socio-economic variables and it allows for the planning of
integrated surveys to reduce costs and to facilitate greater operational
efficiency and statistical linkages. The development of such an integrated
programme for socio-economic indicators should closely be coordinated with
similar activities in the countries such as the Integrated Programme of
Agricultural Censuses and Surveys and the National Household Survey
Capability Programme (NHSCP).

4.4 A Minimum Programme of Statistical Development for Monitoring
Poverty Alleviation

4.4.1 The list of "core" indicators suggested for monitoring rural poverty
has been marked with asterisks in Table 1 of Section 2. These indicators
have been selected from the longer list of primary indicators included in
the same table. They are suggested for initial use in a minimum phased
programme for monitoring rural poverty in countries with insufficient data
and resources. At the same time, efforts should be made to develop
statistics until the full range of primary indicators is covered. The
minimum programme should gradually be expanded, in stages to cover various
indicators, over a period of about ten years following the principles of an
integrated programme of censuses and surveys outlined in sub-section 4.3
above. The programme would thus involve a series of successive and
continuous surveys covering the various indicators' data, that can gradually
be enlarged in scope until all the "core" indicators have been covered.

4.4.2 The "core" indicators for a minimum programme are specially directed
towards the understanding of equity, mainly with reference to rural poverty,
income distribution, health, nutrition, education, access to resources and
services and the employment and earnings of agricultural labourers. While
it is necessary to cover housing conditions, no simple and valid indicator
was found that would also be comparable across countries. Countries are
free to omit or add to this list other key indicators which they consider

4/ See: UN. Handbook on Household Surveys (Revised Edition). Studies in
Methods, Series F, No. 31, New York, 1984.

47 -

more relevant to their situations. They may also develop statistical
programmes for these indicators that are best suited to their needs and

4.4.3 It is of course assumed that the major population and agricultural
censuses will also be conducted at least once in ten years, to provide the
basic structural indicators on the distribution of the population and
agricultural holdings. However, the important role and value of these
censuses, in a continuing programme of integrated surveys, lies in providing
sampling frames and in improving survey designs for inter-censal sample
surveys that are crucial for the continuous monitoring and evaluation of
progress in agrarian reform and rural development. The minimum statistical
programme will thus benefit tremendously from the conduct of such censuses
which are basic to the development of national statistics in the countries.

- 48 -



5.1 Introduction

5.1.1 The development of statistics and indicators on special population
groups, identified in the WCARRD Programme of Action (women, children, the
youth, the elderly and the disabled persons) constitutes an integral part of
the socio-economic indicators programme. However, there is the need for
maximum coordination with the work of other UN agencies responsible for
statistical activities in these fields.

5.2 Statistics on the Role of Women in Agriculture

5.2.1 Indicators and hence statistical programmes on the role of women in
agriculture and rural development are basically the same as those discussed
in the guidelines. However, when feasible; indicators require disaggre-
gation by sex and by male and female headed households to adequately meet
women's concerns. Female headed households should further be sub-divided
according to the number of absentee adult males and the number of
dependents. Specific data requirements consist of the inclusion of
variables required for policy analysis and planning, such as household
income by source, size and type of holdings, membership in rural
organizations, etc.

5.2.2 The type of surveys and sample size that can provide the above data,
simultaneously, are still very limited in developing countries. An
integrated system of surveys is therefore required to ensure that the
various data on women can be related and their interactions studied over
time. Where multi-subject household surveys are in operation, women's
concerns can easily be incorporated, but such surveys should be supplemented
by a continuing integrated programme of surveys for assessing trends and
monitoring the impact on women, of rural development policies and
programmes. The principles of such an integrated programme are discussed in
sub-section 4.3 above.

5.2.3 Statistics of persons economically active in agriculture, by
employment status, occupation, hours worked etc., obtained from censuses and
surveys have shown certain biases resulting in the under-enumeration of
women in the labour force. This is due to the preconceptions of women's
work by respondents and interviewers and the deficiencies in concepts and
methods used in collecting the data. The ILO has made several suggestions
and recommendations that would improve the situation. 1/

5.2.4 Apart from providing useful indicators on time spent by women in
income earning activities, child care, housekeeping activities, etc., time
use surveys conducted on sub-sample basis can also be helpful in evaluating
census and survey results on women's economic activities.

1/ ILO. Thirteenth International Conference of Labour Statisticians.
Report of the Conference, Geneva 1982. (ICLS/13. D11).

- 49 -

5.3 Statistics on Rural Landlessness

5.3.1 Some aspects relating to the development of statistics on rural
landlessness have already been discussed under the indicators on percentages
of rural heads of households without land, average wages of agricultural
labourers and on agricultural labourers as percentage of the population
economically active in agriculture (see Section 3). However, it is
necessary to improve the concepts and coverage by using the criteria based
on lack of access to land and on dependency on wage employment. Some
methodological improvements could entail (a) the insertion of questions in
national population censuses to identify the landless and to establish a
socio-economic group covering the landless households, (b) the use of the
agricultural census in collecting data and in constructing a sampling frame
on the landless and (c) the inclusion of special survey "modules" on
landlessness in various household surveys.

5.3.2 Work could proceed along the lines indicated above. However, some
preliminary recommendations of an FAO study undertaken in Turkey in 1987 are
given below as possible examples. These recommendations show how questions
on rural landless labourers can be included in the agricultural census
conducted in that country. Some similar approaches would however need to be
worked out and adapted to individual countries' needs and conditions.

5.3.3 The results of the study recommended the inclusion of relevant
questions on the rural landless labourers at three levels or stages of
census enumeration, namely, the village level, the listing of households and
the household level (households or holding). The main objective was to
identify specific and relatively homogeneous sub-groups which may constitute
the "landless" thus avoiding a prior arbitrary or too rigid a choice of the
definition of the term at the data collection stage.

5.3.4 The village schedule. Inclusion in a village schedule of the
following sequence of information:

(a) the total number of households in the village; and of these,

(b) the number operating an agricultural holding with land

(c) the number operating holdings without land (livestock farmers),

(d) the number not operating a holding, but engaged in agricultural
(farm labour) whether within or outside the village, and

(e) the number operating a non-agricultural enterprise, or engaged
as labourers in non-agricultural activities, again whether
within or outside the village.

5.3.5 According to the above classifications, category (d) provides a
minimum estimate of the landless; but in addition there will be households
among (b) and (c) who, because of the smallness of the operation (as
identified from the detailed questioning, at the household or holding level)
could be classified as landless. Further questioning can also reveal those
among (e) who have no regular employment; and hence according to some
definition are included in the landless.

- 50 -

5.3.6 Listing and sampling. Listing and selection of sampling units from
all households in selected villages rather than only the agricultural
holders. Conduct a short interview to identify various categories of
households that are of interest in the study of landlessness. The questions
to be put may include the following:

(a) whether the household head worked as farm labourer for 30 days
or more during the reference year;

(b) the number of other members who worked as above;

(c) the total number including the head who worked for wages in
non-farm work; and

(d) whether the household operated a holding above a certain
minimum size.

5.3.7 The above give the possibilities of identifying at least an
important segment of the landless those answering 'yes' to (a) or (b) but
'no' to (d). (Among those answering 'no' to (d), those operating holdings of
inadequate size or with inadequate income the near landless may of
course be identified at the stage of detailed household/holding levels
questioning subsequently.

5.3.8 Detailed household questionnaire. This would involve the detailed
listing of individual members of the household separately, to obtain
demographic and employment characteristics, the questions applying to all
households including non-holding households. Only after this will such
households be identified and eliminated from further detailed questioning
concerning the census.

5.4 Statistics on Disabled Persons

5.4.1 The UN Statistical Office in cooperation with the UN Centre for
Social Development and Humanitarian Affairs (CSDHA) is responsible for the
development of disability statistics, as part of the implementation and
monitoring of the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons. 2/
Complementary activities involved in the improvement of statistics of
disabled persons as part o' the WCARRD Programme of Action should be seen as
contributing to the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons
and should therefore be closely coordinated with this Programme. It is also
essential that the WCARRD Programme of Action concerns with rural
development and poverty alleviation are taken into account in the
development of disability statistics, thus ensuring the close coordination
of statistics and indicators being developed for these two Programmes of

5.4.2 Since poverty and malnutriton are among the major causes of
disability, the indicators suggested in these guidelines, when
disaggregation by individuals is feasible and meaningful, would provide
valuable data for the study of the prevalence of disability and the related

2/ Development of Statistics for Monitoring the Implementation of the World
Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons, 1983-1992.

- 51 -

socio-economic factors too. They would
formulation of policies and programmes

also constitute a basis for
for disability prevention

5.4.3 A recent United Nations' study has reviewed the development of
statistical concepts and methods concerning disability for use in household
surveys. This is based on selected national and international experiences
and views, and has been prepared with the objective of assisting countries
in developing their own survey work in this field 3/.

5.4.4 A classification which has been developed by the United Nations for
the study of population census and survey data and is based on the World
Health Organization trial classification of impairments, disabilities and
handicaps is the following:

Mute ) Sensory
Visceral (internal organs and related functions
Loss of one or more limbs
Mental and psychological
Generalized and others


3/ UN. Development of Statistical Concepts and Methods on Disability for
Household Surveys. Studies in Methods, Series F, No. 38. New York,



List of Supplementary Indicators

Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6


forestry and

1. Public expenditure in
agriculture as per-
centage of total
2. Production and
yield of crops

3. Agricultural area
improved by drainage,
irrigation, terracing
etc. as a percentage
of agricultural land

4. Number of livestock
species and/or units
per economically active
persons in agriculture

a) Amount of Public in-
vestment in agriculture
b) Total public investment

a) Production of crops
b) Total area harvested

a) Agricultural area
improved by drainage,
irrigation, terracing
b) Agricultural land

a) Livestock population
b) Economically active
persons in agriculture

1. Annual budgets of
public authorities

1. Current agricultural
2. Crop reporting surveys
3. Agricultural censuses
and surveys

1. Administrative re-
cords of agricultural
or land administra-
tion agencies
2. Agricultural censuses
and surveys

1. Agricultural censuses
and surveys
2. Livestock censuses and
3. Population censuses and
4. Labour force surveys

- Sub-sectors

- Geographical

- Geographical

- Geographical





Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6

forestry and

a) Crop area, yield and

a) Area of arable land in
b) Total potential arable

a) Net reforested area
b) Forest land area

5. Production

6. Land scarcity:
arable area in use
as percentage of total
potential arable area

7. Planted forest area as
a percentage of forest
area and per capital

8. Forest area as a
percentage of total

9. Fuel consumption
per capital

10. Production of small-
scale fisheries in
quantities and value

11. Fish consumption per

a) Quantities of fuel
wood consumed
b) Total population

a) Quantities of fisheries
b) Value of fisheries

a) Quantities of fish
b) Total and household
population size

1. Current agricultural
2. Agricultural surveys

1. Current agricultural
2. Land use surveys

1. Records of the
Ministry of Agriculture
2. Agricultural and
forestry censuses and


1. Household surveys,
administrative records

Fisheries surveys
Fisheries price

1. Household consumption
and expenditure
2. Food consumption

- Geographical
- Type of crop

- Geographical

- Geographical
- Type of forest


- Urban/rural
- Geographical

- Geographical
- Marine/inland

- Urban/rural
- Socio-economic
- Income groups

a) Forest area
b) Total land area








Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6


12. Net international

a) Number of immigrants
and emigrants
b) Total population

1. Population censuses
2. Demographic surveys
3. Vital registration
4. International migration

13. Internal migration

14. Percentage of
economically active
population in agri-

a) Migrants
b) Total population

a) Economically
active population
in agriculture
b) Total economically
active population

Population censuses
Demographic surveys
Vital registration

Population censuses
Labour force surveys

- Geographical
- Sex
- Age

- Urban/rural
- Geographical
- Socio-economic
- Sex
- Age


15. Average per capital
income of each
decile/quartile of
the households


a) Total household income/
b) Population for each
decile/quartile of the
household income/

1. Household income/
expenditure surveys
2. Administrative records

- Urban/rural

- Sex
- Age






Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6

16. Per capital calorie
and protein
consumption per day

17. Life expectancy
at birth

18. Maternal mortality

19. Level of educa-
tional attainment

20. Percent of popu-
lation with voca-
tional training


a) Energy, protein and
vitamins requirements
b) Percentage adequacy of
energy and nutrients
c) Total and household

a) Number of deaths in a
year and mid-year
population by 5 year
age groups

a) Number of maternal
deaths in a year
b) Number of live births
during a year

a) Number of persons
attaining different
levels of education
b) Total population

a) Number of persons of
ages 15-64 with
vocational training
b) Total number of popula-
tion of these age groups

1. Household budget
and expenditure
2. Food consumption

1. Demographic surveys
2. Vital registration
3. Population censuses

1. Health administrative
2. Vital registration
3. Demographic surveys

1. Population censuses
and surveys
2. Administrative
records of the
Ministry of Education

1. Administrative
records of concerned
2. Population censuses
and surveys


- Urban/rural
- Income/
- Socio-economic

- Urban/rural
- Socio-economic
- Sex

- Urban/rural

- Urban/rural
- Geographical
- Sex


- Urban/rural Annual/
- Type and level of Periodic
- Sex






Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6

21. Percentage of
household dwellings
in good condition

22. Percentage of
rural households who
own their house (and

23. Percentage of popu-
lation occupying
living quarters at
density of 3 or more
persons per room

24. Percentage of homeless
rural households 1/

a) Household dwellings in
good condition
b) Total number of

a) Rural households who
own their house (and
b) Total rural households

a) Number of population
occupying living
quarters at density
of 3 or more persons
per room
b) Total number of

a) Number of homeless
rural households
b) Total rural households



1. Population and
housing censuses
2. Household surveys

1. Population and
Housing censuses
and s 'vey2

1. Housing censuses
2. Population censuses

1. Housing censuses
and surveys
2. Household surveys and
population censuses

1/ The homeless people will be defined as: (i) those with no home including those rendered homeless by natural and man-made
disasters; (ii) those who lack a real home one which provides protection from the elements; provides for secure tenure
and personal safety; is within easy reach of centres for employment, education and health care.

- Urban/rural
- Socio-economic
- Sex of head of

- Geographical
- Socio-econnmic
- Se of head tf

- Urban/rural
- Geogographical

- Geographical
- Sex of head of





Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6

Access to

Access to
land, water
and other

25. Percentage of popu-
lation living in
villages or commu-
nities with access to:
a) all-weather roads
b) means of public
c) electricity

26. Average size of
holdings for each
decile/quartile of

27. Percentage of land
owned by each decile/
quartile of house-

28. Average livestock
numbers for each
decile/quartile of
livestock holdings

a) Population living in
villages or communities
with access to:
i) all-weather roads
ii) means of public
iii) electricity
b) Total population in

a) Amount of land for
each decile/quartile
of operational holdings
b) Total operational
holdings in each decile/

a) Amount of owned land
for each decile/
quartile of households
b) Total amount of land

a) Number of livestock for
each decile/quartile
of livestock holding
b) Number of livestock
holdings per decile/

1. Community (village)
level statistics
2. Household surveys
3. Population censuses
4. Administrative records
of relevant ministries

1. Agricultural censuses
and surveys
2. Land records

1. Agricultural censuses
and surveys
2. Land records

1. Agricultural censuses
and surveys
2. Livestock census and

- Geographical

- Geographical
- Sex of head of

- Geographical
- Sex of head of

- Geographical
- Age and sex





Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6

Access to 29. Non-cultivating
land, water land owners (absen-
and other tee landlords) by
natural percentage of area
resources or of number of
holdings owned

Access to 30. Percentage of hol-
inputs, dings/households
markets and using agricultural
services inputs e.g.
(including fertilizers
price policy) improved seed
farm machinery and

31. Fertilizer consump-
tion per hectare of
arable land and land
under permanent crops

32. Index of prices
received by farmers for
agricultural products
relative to index of
prices paid by farmers
for production

a) Number of non-
cultivating land owners
(absentee landlords)
b) Amount of land owned by
c) Amount of total land areas
d) Total number of holdings

a) Holdings/households
using given agri-
cultural inputs
b) Total agricultural

a) Total amount of ferti-
lizer consumed
b) Area of arable land and
land under permanent

a) Prices received by
farmers for agricultural
b) Prices paid by farmers

1. Agriculture censuses
and surveys
2. Administrative


1. Agricultural censuses
and surveys
2. Farm management
3. Current agricultural
4. Administrative records
of agencies involved

1. Agricultural surveys
2. Administrative records
3. Current agricultural
statistics and surveys

1. Current prices
2. Farm management

- Urban/rural
- Size class of

- Geographical
- Size of

- Geographical
- Type of nutrient
- Size of holding

- Geographical

for production requisites





Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6

of non-farm

33. Density of roads
(in km. per one
hundred square km.)

a) Length of roads in km. 1.
b) Area in sq. km.

Administrative records Geographical
of agencies concerned, regions
e.g. Ministry of Trans-
port and Communications,
Public Works etc.

" 34. Per capital electri-
city consumption

a) Electricity consumption 1.
b) Population 2.

Records of electricity
boards or agencies
Rural energy surveys

- Urban/rural
- Geographical
- Type of use
(households and


People's 35.

Percentage of
rural adults
with membership
in formal and
informal organi-

36. Percentage of
rural population
participating in
local decision-
making bodies

a) Members in formal and
informal organizations
b) Rural adults

a) Rural population
participating in local
decision-making bodies
b) Rural population

1. Government agencies
dealing with people's
2. Registers of state or
regional associations
or federations to which
members are affiliated

1. Records of local
government and other
2. Special surveys

- Geographical
- Type of
- Sex

- Geographical
- Type of local
making bodies
- Sex





Area of Indicators Primary data Data sources Level of Frequency
concern requirements disaggregation

1 2 3 4 5 6

People's 37. Percentage of
participation adult rural popula-
(including tion participating
women's in design, monitoring
participation) and evaluation of
agricultural and
rural development

a) Rural population parti-
cipating in design,
monitoring and evalua-
tion of agricultural
and rural development
b) Rural population

1. Records of concerned
2. Rural local bodies
and special surveys

- Geographical
- Type of
- Sex












;:I:i~l;:; ; 6;

: .


iuseaise e n. e

ti I


; I"
i' 4

:. :1
i.:. i i.....i '' iI









University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs