Résilience - COVID-19 - Résilience - Coronavirus disease 2019

Poverty dynamics in times of Covid-19 – DISPOVER

Submission summary

It is now widely accepted that households in poverty, and more generally households with the most precarious living conditions, are the hardest hit by the crisis caused by the Covid-19 epidemic, due to their greater exposure to health risks and to the economic and social consequences of this crisis. In France, it has been mentioned that this multidimensional crisis could push a million more people, especially young people, women and families, into poverty.
Yet, just one year after the start of the crisis and due to a lack of adequate and rapidly available data, some estimates reported in the media have still not been accurately measured, and the exact extent and nature of the impacts of this crisis on poverty are still largely unknown. This lack of knowledge constitutes a major obstacle to the implementation of policies capable of responding to this unprecedented crisis and limiting its impact on the most vulnerable populations.
The DISPOVER project, through a partnership with Secours Catholique-Caritas France (SCCF), aims to fill the knowledge gap on the dynamics of poverty induced by the Covid-19 epidemic in France. Drawing on the information that the association collects in real time from the households it supports, the project aims to shed new light, both quantitatively and qualitatively, on the evolution of poverty profiles during the health crisis. It follows two objectives: (1) to analyse the impact of the crisis on the living conditions of poor households in the short and medium term, and (2) to describe the new poverty profiles generated by the crisis in the short and medium term.
In order to achieve these objectives, the project plans to set up two data production systems. The first will be based on the capture, at three key periods - before the onset of the crisis, 1 year and 2 years after - of data contained in a representative sample of admission files that each household fills in when meeting one of the SCCF teams. Ten delegations, and thirty local teams spread across the country, will be involved in the project. This will ensure that the observations vary according to the environment in which the household lives (urban, peri-urban and rural) and the intensity of the epidemic. These data will enable a longitudinal and multivariate analysis of the profiles of households in a situation of poverty, and their budgetary situation, during the first two years of the crisis. The second system, funded by the association, will be based on a survey from a sample of beneficiaries of SCCF emergency food aid. This will enable us to analyse the profiles of households that have requested this aid during the crisis, and to compare them with those of the households that the association supports in normal times. These quantitative analyses will be enriched by a third source of information collected from the associative world.
The SCCF, a leading association in the fight against poverty, has been involved for more than 20 years in the production of data and knowledge on precariousness. Its annual statistical report is recognised by all public, associative and academic actors involved in the fight against poverty as a valuable complement to official statistics. The association's fine territorial network and its access to precarious populations invisible in public statistics, contribute to the wealth of its data and make its statistical report a reference. Since 2016, the analyses and writing of the report have been carried out by a statistician and two economic researchers, all three of whom were at the origin of the DISPOVER project.

Project coordination


The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


RITM Réseaux, Innovation, Territoires et Mondialisation
SCCF Secours Catholique Caritas France

Help of the ANR 80,000 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: April 2021 - 12 Months

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