Does culture affect energy poverty? Evidence from a cross-country analysis

Sajid M. Chaudhry, Muhammad Shafiullah*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We investigate the impact of cultural dimension on energy poverty—a topic hitherto overlooked in the literature—employing panel fixed effects, logistic, and heteroskedasticity identified endogenous variable regression estimators. The panel framework incorporates 103 countries over a period of 1971–2018. Using five different proxies representing the cultural dimensions and other demographic and macroeconomic control variables, the empirical analyses reveal that power distance and masculinity (as opposed to femininity) worsen the conditions of energy poverty while individualism (as opposed to collectivism) and long/short-term orientation (i.e., pragmatism vs. traditionalism/conservatism) tend to lessen the probability of energy deprivation. We find the effect of uncertainty avoidance on energy poverty ambiguous. Our research findings have profound policy implications in reducing not just energy poverty but also eradicating poverty in general. In light of our results, we suggest policy reforms and global initiatives that are gender sensitive, incorporate the multidimensional impact of culture on national behavior particularly aiming at reversing the cultural acceptance of a higher degree of unequally distributed power, and create a more inclusive society with pragmatism, leading to the achievement of the sustainable development goals of the 2030 Agenda.
Original languageEnglish
Article number105536
Number of pages16
JournalEnergy Economics
Early online date26 Aug 2021
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2021

Bibliographical note

© 2021, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


  • Cultural dimensions
  • Culture
  • Energy poor
  • Energy poverty


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