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Methodology and Research

The new ICP framework sets out concerted remedial actions for international and regional agencies, along with national data compilers. Targeted research, international conferences and expert group meetings are now addressing longstanding issues linked to PPP aggregation methods, and also data collection and processing practices. 

A research grant, as part of the World Bank Chief Economist Research Initiative, in January 2002 helped finance the preparation of more than 20 research papers and an international conference in December 2002. Additional resources from the ICP global trust fund, World Bank sources, the African Development Bank and the Asian Development Bank contributed to the preparation of additional papers and case studies. The ICP research was undertaken in consultation, and in some cases in collaboration, with the OECD/Eurostat PPP program. 

While the general principle underlying the ICP methodology is essentially the same as in the previous rounds, significant changes have been introduced in the 2005 Round:

  • A new Structured Product Description (SPD) approach has improved the scope and quality of regional and global lists of specifications.
  • A comprehensive Handbook and a set of operational guidelines serve both as reference material and step-by-step guidance for data collection and compilation.
  • An integrated software system, the Tool Pack, has been developed for standardized data collection, verification and processing, and capacity building.
  • Great strides have been made in construction and equipment surveys, aggregation of PPPs at the basic heading level, linking of regional results to estimate robust global PPPs, and estimation of poverty-specific PPPs

Members of the Technical Advisory Group were instrumental in the success of this initiative, both in providing guidance and undertaking influential studies. The following links provide access to the papers and case studies. 

Development of regional and global list of specifications
Survey Frames and Surveys: Organization and Implementation
Development of data collection, verification and processing software
Comparison of services - general government, heath, and education
Comparison of machinery and equipment goods
Comparison of construction projects
Compiling weights for basic expenditure headings
Estimation of PPPs at the level of basic expenditure headings
Linking of regional results 
Poverty PPPs

Additional Research

Aggregation of PPPs above basic headings
Estimation of PPPs for non-benchmark countries using a regression model
Estimation of PPPs for non-benchmark years to generate time series PPPs
Estimation of PPPs for non-benchmark economies for the 2005 ICP round 


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