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Mike Berry

Morality and Power 13.  Inequality The history of inequality is shaped by the way economic, social, and political actors view what is just and what is not, as well as by the relative power of those actors and the collective choices that result (Thomas Piketty). 1 CONTEXT In 1958 the Harvard University economist John Kenneth Galbraith (JKG) published a justly famous book – The Affluent Society – in which he proclaimed the demise of economic inequality in the leading economies of the world, most notably his own. A little over 50 years later his son

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Yanbi Hong and Yandong Zhao

12.  Educational inequality Yanbi Hong and Yandong Zhao INTRODUCTION The twentieth century, especially its second half, witnessed the rapid expansion of education in both developed and developing countries (Schofer and Meyer, 2005). China is no exception. The enrolment rate at primary school increased from 20 per cent in 1949 to 85 per cent in 1965. It reached 99 per cent in 2004, while 98 per cent of school-age children completed nine years of compulsory education in 2007. Only about 30 per cent of Chinese born in the early twentieth century received education

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Serge-Christophe Kolm

36 Inequality Serge-Christophe Kolm Introduction When some people are treated more or less favourably than others without a seemingly valid reason, this inequality arouses a judgement of injustice which is conveyed in the term ‘inequality’. Such inequalities are a major issue for judging societies or policies and are often compared across time or societies, in particular by the media and politicians. Such comparisons are a priori highly problematic, however, since given any two unequal distributions of some item, one can most of the time show that any one is

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Lars Söderström

2. Inequality Market economies give rise to a great variety of economic positions with differences in wealth, income and consumption. Such differences are commonly called ‘inequality’. This chapter attempts to bring some of the controversies surrounding inequality into perspective by emphasizing three aspects. First, inequality reflects differences in choice as well as in opportunities. It is rarely the case that an individual has to have a particular wealth, income or consumption. Second, choices and opportunities are interrelated over an individual’s life cycle

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Impact on inequality

The Impact on Labour Markets and Welfare States

Bent Greve

Technology and the Future of Work 8.  Impact on inequality 8.1  INTRODUCTION Recent years have seen a growing number of books and articles on the consequences of increasing economic inequality (wealth and income). This chapter uses this as a starting point, and reflects on the consequences of labour market changes on the degree of equality and how this might influence equality in the years to come. Given the centrality in many countries of having a job, inequality in access to jobs might give rise to new types of inequality, including access to

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Casilda Lasso de la Vega

17.  Social inequality: theoretical approaches Casilda Lasso de la Vega 17.1  INTRODUCTION The analysis of the inequality in the distribution of income has attracted the attention of many economists for quite some time now and a great number of different problems have been addressed and deeply analysed. There are two key concepts that underlie the measurement of income inequality. The first is that there is no inequality when everybody enjoys the mean income, or to put it differently, the mean income is taken as the equality reference point. The second basic

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Indranil Dutta and Gaston Yalonetzky

18.  Social inequality: empirical findings Indranil Dutta and Gaston Yalonetzky 18.1  Introduction In recent years, especially since the 2008 Global Financial Crisis, socioeconomic inequality has soared to the front pages of the public discourse.1 Furious debates have taken place in our public forums and sometimes violent skirmishes have erupted in the streets from heated sentiments around inequality. In addition to income and wealth inequalities, academics, policy-makers and lay people have long expressed concerns over other forms of inequality, generally

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Heather Boushey

1 INTRODUCTION For many years, the relationship between economic inequality and growth was not a topic of great concern for economists. Let me start with an example. In 2010, Paul Krugman gave a speech at a conference held by the Luxembourg Income Study. He said that, before the financial crisis in 2008, when people pointed to the similarities in the rise in income inequality in the 1920s and the past few decades, he had reservations that the prevailing high levels of inequality would lead to the same kind of economic crisis as we saw in the 1930s ( Krugman 2010

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Reducing Inequalities in Europe

How Industrial Relations and Labour Policies Can Close the Gap

Edited by Daniel Vaughan-Whitehead

International debate has recently focused on increased inequalities and the adverse effects they may have on both social and economic developments. Income inequality, now at its highest level for the past half-century, may not only undermine the sustainability of European social policy but also put at risk Europe’s sustainable recovery. A common feature of recent reports on inequality (ILO, OECD, IMF, 2015–17) is their recognition that the causes emerge from mechanisms in the world of work. The purpose of this book is to investigate the possible role of industrial relations, and labour policies more generally, in reducing these inequalities.
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David A. Clark, Shailaja Fennell and David Hulme

27  Poverty and inequality David A. Clark, Shailaja Fennell and David Hulme INTRODUCTION Poverty and inequality are difficult concepts to define and measure.1 This is largely because they are complex social phenomena that can be described in different ways. It is also because they are highly controversial and deeply contested concepts. The Oxford English Dictionary (2015) defines poverty as ‘destitution’ with respect to lack of wealth and material possessions.2 It also describes poverty as a ‘deficiency’ in some ‘desired quality’ or property. Inequality is ‘the