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The Drivers of Income Inequality in Rich Countries

Nolan, Brian and Richiardi, Matteo and Valenzuela, Luis (2019) 'The Drivers of Income Inequality in Rich Countries.' Journal of Economic Surveys, 33 (4). pp. 1285-1324. ISSN 0950-0804

Nolan-Richiardi-Valenzuela (2019, JES).pdf - Accepted Version

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Rising income inequality has recently come centre-stage as a core societal concern for rich countries. The diagnosis of the forces driving inequality upwards and their relative importance remains hotly contested, notably with respect to the roles of globalization versus technology and of market forces versus institutions and policy choices. This survey provides a critical review and synthesis of recent research. The focus is on income inequality across the entire distribution, rather than only on what has been happening at the very top. We pay particular attention to including what has been learned from the analysis of micro-data, to ensuring that the coverage is not unduly US-centric, and to analyses of the interrelations between the different drivers of inequality. The marked differences in inequality trends across countries and time-periods reflect how global economic forces such as globalisation and technological change have interacted with differing national contexts and institutions. Major analytical challenges stand in the way of a consensus emerging on the relative importance of different drivers in how income inequality has evolved in recent decades.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: inequality, wage dispersion, technology, globalisation, market power
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HB Economic Theory
Divisions: Faculty of Social Sciences
Faculty of Social Sciences > Institute for Social and Economic Research
SWORD Depositor: Elements
Depositing User: Elements
Date Deposited: 04 Jun 2019 15:30
Last Modified: 06 Jan 2022 14:00

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