At the end of the 1980s, Côte d’Ivoire entered a deep macroeconomic crisis that put an end to the often-praised ‘Ivorian miracle’. After the death of the founding father Houphouet-Boigny, unrestrained political competition added to bad economic conditions and led to the nightmare of civil war. Drawing from a series of 5 household surveys covering two decades (1988-2008), we tell the story of this descent into hell from the standpoint of poverty and living standards. In 2008, after 5 years of civil war and another episode yet to come (2010-11), the extreme US$1.25 poverty headcount had reached a historical record, with Northern areas deeply impoverished by the partition.
Cogneau, D.; Houngbedji, K.; Mesplé-Somps, S. The Fall of the Elephant: Two Decades of Poverty Increase in Côte d’ Ivoire (1988-2008). UNU-WIDER, Helsinki, Finland (2014) 44 pp. ISBN 978-92-9230-865-0 [WIDER Working Paper No. 2014/144]