Poverty is a burning issue nowadays because it exists not only in separate countries or regions but throughout the world. Even in rich countries, such as the United States and Great Britain, poverty causes serious problems, like alcohol and drug abuse, violence, premature morbidity, and stress. All these factors influence the society and the economy negatively, cause enormous underdevelopment and bring about different forms of social and political protest, which, in many cases, end up with violence and destruction.
Global poverty arises an intent interest as the world economy is becoming more and more globalized. According to Martell (2017), “large-scale global processes of economic restructuring have a big impact on our individual lives. The global economy and distribution of wealth effect, for example, our chances of unemployment, alongside our material circumstances generally” (6). That is why one should admit that in the modern world, poverty is not only a lack of jobs and money but also a many-sided and complex global phenomenon. It depends on macroeconomic factors and should be treated globally.
As a fundamental science, sociology explains various social phenomena. When the roots and causes of a problem have been described, the issue can be solved, and sociology becomes an applied science. Global poverty is worth consideration because it is a problem, to which there is still no solution. Moreover, the gap between the rich and the poor has become larger globally. According to Townsend (2014), “poverty is deep-seated in many rich and not only poor countries and seems destined to get worse in both groups of countries” (p. 3). It means that the rich are growing more prosperous, and the poor are becoming poorer. This tendency is unfavorable for the world economy as people in need have no time or money for education and self-development. They do underpaid jobs and get little money. Such individuals are inclined to crimes. To reduce the growth of poverty, well-grounded, and scientifically based, macroeconomic measures need to be taken.
The most difficult thing in discussing and scientifically explaining the phenomenon of poverty is that there is no macroeconomic approach to it. In fact, sociologists have not yet worked out a proper global conception, or a system of measures, which could eliminate or even reduce poverty. For this purpose, “myopic and piecemeal preoccupation with particular cultural and regional meanings of the word <…> has to be relinquished” (Townsend, 2014, p. 3). It means that the current scientific view of the poverty issue is too narrow and insufficient.
To reach good results, there should be thorough sociological research on global poverty. As poverty depends mainly on the state of the economy and job market, such inquiries will have a visible practical effect. It will provide sociologists and governments with instruments to give people more well-paid jobs and reduce the number of the poor. According to Bhalla and Lapeyre (2016). “studies show a positive correlation between economic and social indicators, for example, between economic vulnerability, social-relation deprivation, bad housing, health conditions and weak social participation on the one hand, and employment status on the other” (p. xii). That is why, when the causes have been studied on a complex scientific basis, there will be some opportunities to combat poverty effectively.
All these facts make one conclude that poverty is a serious issue that should be treated and studied globally. In addition, the above-mentioned facts show that there is no adequate scientific approach to the topic. That is why this problem requires a thorough scientific discussion, which will demonstrate how to eliminate poverty and its consequences – social diseases, such as crime, suicide, sex, and racial discrimination, premature morbidity, exposure, and drug abuse.
Bhalla, A.S., & Lapeyre, F. (2016). Poverty and Exclusion in a Global World. London, England: Macmillan Press Ltd.
Martell, R. (2017). The Sociology of Globalization. Cambridge, England: Polity Press.
Townsend, P. (2014). The International Analysis of Poverty. New York, NY: Routledge.