The project focus are inequalities in income/wealth and education and their social/political/cultural impacts. It combines an interdisciplinary approach, improved methodologies, wide country coverage, a clear policy dimension and broad dissemination. It exploits differences between and within countries in inequality levels and trends to understand impacts and tease out implications for policy and institutions. It highlights potential effects of individual distributional positions and increasing inequality for a host of ‘bad outcomes’ (societal and individual) and allows feedback from impacts to inequality in a frame of policy-oriented debate and comparison across 25 EU countries, USA, Japan, Canada and Australia. Social impacts include educational access and achievement, individual employment opportunities and labour market behaviour, household joblessness, living standards and deprivation, family and household formation/breakdown, housing and intergenerational social mobility, individual health and life expectancy, and social cohesion versus polarisation. Underlying long-term trends, the economic cycle and the current financial and economic crisis will be incorporated. Politico-cultural impacts investigated are: Do increasing income/educational inequalities widen cultural and political ‘distances’, alienating people from politics, globalisation and European integration? Do they affect individuals’ participation and general social trust? Is acceptance of inequality and policies of redistribution affected by inequality itself? What effects have political systems (coalitions/winner-takes-all)? Finally, it focuses on costs and benefits of limiting income inequality and its efficiency for mitigating other inequalities (health, housing, education and opportunity). A detailed flexible plan and support from an outstanding Advisory Board will allow the highly experienced research team to deliver important new answers to questions of great import to European societies.
Call for proposal
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