Household size and composition as a driver of energy poverty: Evidence from census data in non-OECD countries

Krešimir Ivanda, University Of Zagreb, Department Of Demography
Marin Strmota, University of Zagreb

Access to electricity is a prerequisite for multiple activities and benefits that improve quality of life and prevent poverty. Developing countries have witnessed impressive improvement in household electrification in recent decades. However, almost 20% of world population is still lacking access to electricity. Existing literature on energy poverty is lacking the demographic background and is focused on building characteristics rather than including household size and composition. Scarce interdisciplinary literature that does take the demographic aspects of energy poverty unanimously confirms its importance. Using IPUMS-I census microdata for 75 non-OECD countries from the period 1970-2014 we analyze the effect of household characteristics on access to electricity as a measure of energy poverty. Focusing on household size and composition we found that bigger, rural and certain household types have higher odds of being non-electrified. Also, differences between regions exist and are most pronounced between Sub-Saharan Africa and the rest of the non-OECD countries analyzed in this paper. This research demonstrated that census data could be used to measure energy poverty and its characteristics. Furthermore, our findings magnify the need for better understanding of demographic background of energy poverty and reshaping our energy policies.

Keywords: Multiregional demography, Economic analysis, Cross-country comparative analyses, Inequality

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  Presented in Session P6.