Poverty Reduction Model

The Poverty Reduction Model (PRM) is a mapping of causes and effects of poverty in Toronto.  Most of the PRM content is also relevant to Ontario, and large multicultural cities in developed countries.  Poverty is a very complex social system, as reflected in this large model:  it has 550 elements and over 1100 connections, which can be visualized in smaller diagrams using Kumu software.

The PRM was developed in cooperation with the Yonge Street Mission, a social services agency in Toronto.  The PRM was part of my Master’s Research Project, and is being used to develop the City of Toronto’s 2019 Poverty Reduction Strategy.  Please use the contact form below to ask me about viewing, using or extending the Poverty Reduction Model with your organization.

The PRM has comprehensive coverage of housing and employment issues, and light to moderate coverage of physical & mental health; finances, income & Social Assistance; education, training, childcare and child welfare; newcomer settlement; criminal justice; other services (transportation, library, legal, etc.); service access & quality; and social support & dignity needs.

These subject areas are colour-coded in the model diagrams, such as the following sample from the PRM.  The blue arrows mean that increasing the first factor may increase the related factor, for example, Job Retention increases Employment Income.  The red dashed arrows indicate an opposite causal relationship, for example, when a person’s Employment Income goes up, their Social Assistance Income goes down.

Income factors (circles) joined by cause-effect arrows

Factors affecting employment income and social assistance income in Ontario