1887

Does Inequality Matter?

How People Perceive Economic Disparities and Social Mobility

image of Does Inequality Matter?

The recovery after the COVID-19 crisis requires policies and reforms that tackle inequalities and promote equal opportunities. However, the implementation of such reforms requires widespread support from the public. To better understand what factors drive public support, this report provides a detailed cross-country analysis of people’s perceptions of and concern over inequality. It documents how concern over income disparities has risen in OECD countries over the long run. Nowadays, in most countries a large majority of the population believes that income disparities are too large and that intergenerational mobility is low. Yet, sufficient support for inequality-reducing policies may fail to arise if people do not agree on concrete policy options, or doubt the effectiveness of such policies. Moreover, even when the majority demands more equality, a divided public opinion can complicate the introduction of reforms. The report highlights how people within the same country are often divided as to the extent of inequality and what should be done to address this challenge. The report illustrates how the findings from analysis of perceptions and concerns can serve to inform policy making.

English Also available in: French

Changes in redistribution preferences are negatively associated with changes in redistribution, but the link is weak

Percentage point increase in the shares of respondents who agree it is the government’s duty to reduce income differences associated with a 1% (percentage point for fractions) increase in...

English Also available in: French

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error