Definition: Material deprivation

Social statistics

Material deprivation is defined as the enforced lack of a combination of items depicting material living conditions, such as housing conditions, possession of durables, and capacity to afford basic requirements.

To be chosen as a "lifestyle deprivation" item, an item has to meet the following requirements:

(1) it reflects the lack of an ordinary living pattern common to a majority or large part of the population in the European Union and most of its Member States;
(2) it allows international comparisons (i.e., it should have the same information value in the various countries, and not relate specifically to a "national" context);
(3) it allows comparisons over time and 
(4) it is responsive to changes in the level of living of people.

Obviously, the availability and quality of the data is another important constraint that needs to be taken into account.
Eurostat, "Material deprivation in the EU", Statistics in Focus, Population and Social Conditions, 21/2005, Luxembourg, 2005

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