Document Type: Research Paper
In this paper, we ask “Can proximity to towns reduces poverty in rural areas?” For this study we have mapped all the villages in Orissa. The study is based on small area poverty estimation methodology as well as the secondary data covering 47,395 villages and 109 towns. Our main findings are (i) there is a relationship between the distance to nearest town and rural poverty and (ii) poverty levels in rural areas differ according to the type of towns near them and (iii) The combined effect of distance to nearest town and class of town has an U-shape. The study also has various interesting policy as well as regulatory implications.