WLO has three primary objectives, structured around three distinct streams that will be carefully sequenced and closely integrated:
- The objective of THEMATIC RESEARCH is to deepen the understanding of poverty dynamics and particularly of the nature, causes and remedies of chronic poverty, including what the chronically poor already do to try to escape poverty, through analysis and development of appropriate combinations of research methodologies. The foundations of this work will lie in continuing to examine research approaches under three headings:
- Conceptualization of poverty dynamics and persistent poverty;
- Empirical methods for studying poverty dynamics; and
- Empirical methods for studying intergenerational transmission of poverty.
There are three problem-focused basic research themes through which WLO seeks to identify policy, the causes of chronic poverty and advance theoretical understandings:
- Insecurity, risk and vulnerability;
- Assetlessness, low returns and inequality; and
- Adverse incorporation and social exclusion.
2.The objective of POLICY ANALYSIS is to assess key policy issues and aspects of the policy environments which have a bearing on chronic poverty, and to identify effective and sustainable policies to support the chronically poor in their efforts to improve their lives in varied policy contexts.
3.The objective of POLICY ENGAGEMENT is to contribute to a significant shift in policy through challenging governments, policy-makers and the public about the specific needs as well as the capabilities of chronically poor people, the neglect of their rights, policies and implementation strategies that can promote escape from and prevent entry into chronic poverty. WLO also seeks to support the efforts of agencies working in the field by developing with them a stronger relationship based on the policies which make a sustainable difference to the chronically poor.
As a means to achieve these objectives WLO seeks to raise the capacity of researchers, policy analysts and advocates producing and disseminating the knowledge that makes poverty reduction policy more effective.