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Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

Chapter 1 briefly reviews the concept of a living wage, shows that it has a long and distinguished history and has had a recent upsurge in interest and acceptance from governments, multinational companies, unions and NGOs. It is shown that there is a general consensus on its definition, and the living wage definition agreed on by the organizations that are partners in the Global Living Wage Coalition is presented. Chapter 1 discusses why a new methodology is needed to measure living wages around the world, gives an overview of the principles behind the Anker methodology for estimating a living wage, discusses the extensive experience in using the Anker methodology in living wage studies in urban and rural locations around the world, indicates why some subjectivity is not an obstacle to economic concepts, and how a living wage differs from minimum wage. This chapter points out that living wage studies are designed not only to estimate a living wage, but also to put that estimate into context as a catalyst to further action.

Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

It is important to put living wage estimates into context by comparing them with other wage and economic indicators as well as indicating recent trends in real wages. Chapter 17 describes two recommended approaches to providing a contextual backdrop for a living wage estimate. One approach illustrates in a wage ladder figure the size of gaps between prevailing wages in an industry or establishment and a living wage and other wage indicators such as poverty line wages, and average wages. Recommendations for reference points to use in a wage ladder are provided, along with examples of wage ladders from previous living wage studies. The second recommended approach is to use a series of graphs to display how real wages have changed over time in local currency and in US dollars as well as compared with other economic indicators such as minimum wages and labor productivity. Examples of such graphs from previous living wage studies are provided.

Open access

Living Wages Around the World

Manual for Measurement

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

This manual describes a new methodology to measure a decent but basic standard of living in different countries and how much workers need to earn to afford this, making it possible for researchers to estimate comparable living wages around the world and determine gaps between living wages and prevailing wages, even in countries with limited secondary data.
Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

Chapter 6 is concerned with estimating the cost of acceptable housing. It describes how to do a local housing market survey to obtain the cost of rent (and utilities) for decent housing that meets the local housing standard discussed in Chapter 5. It includes tips on how to conduct an efficient local housing market survey, and provides an example of a housing survey questionnaire form. The chapter discusses how to analyze and present the results of a local housing market survey. Chapter 6 also discusses how to estimate housing costs when the rental market for decent housing is not well developed, and so there are very few rental units available that meet the local housing standard for decency.

Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker

Open access

Richard Anker and Martha Anker