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Chronic Poverty in European Mediterranean Countries


This chapter investigates the characteristics of chronic poverty among youth in Southern European countries. These countries have the highest levels of poverty in Europe and welfare systems unable to smooth social inequalities effectively. The main aim of this chapter is to investigate on how long-lasting poor among the Mediterranean youth differs in socio-demographic and economic characteristics. The intensity of poverty over time is measured by a very recent longitudinal poverty index based on the rationale of cumulative hardship. We tested the effects of many covariates on the incidence and intensity of chronic poverty, controlling for main socio-demographic and economic characteristics, using a ZINB model. The peculiar mix between the lack of effective state institutions and a strong presence of families explains why many factors, which usually are significantly related to poverty, do not have an important role here. A strong inertial effect is due to the intensity of poverty at the start of the time-window. Italian youth has the worst performance.