Income and Wealth Inequality

  • Nicholas Bloom
  • Raj Chetty
  • Emmanuel Saez

Leaders: Nicholas Bloom, Raj Chetty, Emmanuel Saez

The CPI is home to some of the country’s most influential analyses of the income and wealth distribution. The purpose of the Income and Wealth RG is to monitor the ongoing takeoff in income inequality, to better understand its sources, and to analyze its implications for labor market performance, educational attainment, mobility, and more. The following is a sampling of the CPI’s research projects within this area.

Trends in income and wealth inequality: What are the key trends in U.S. income and wealth inequality? The U.S. increasingly looks to Emmanuel Saez and his research team for the latest data on U.S. economic inequality.

Distributional National Accounts: In an ambitious infrastructural project, Emmanuel Saez and his team are building a “Distributional National Accounts” based on tax returns, a data set that will eliminate the current gap between (a) national accounts data based on economic aggregates and (b) inequality analysis that uses micro-level tax data to examine the distribution of income but is not consistent with national aggregates. This new data set will in turn make it possible to evaluate the extent to which economic growth, which has long been represented as a preferred poverty-reduction approach, is indeed delivering on that objective.

The rise of between-firm inequality: How much of the rise in earnings inequality can be attributed to increasing between-firm dispersion in the average wages they pay? This question can be addressed by constructing a matched employer-employee data set for the United States using administrative records.

Rent and inequality: It is increasingly fashionable to argue that “rent” accounts for much of the takeoff in income inequality. The Current Population Survey can be used to assess whether this claim is on the mark. 

Income And Wealth - CPI Research

Title Author Media
Egalitarian Societies Woodburn, James.

Egalitarian Societies

Author: Woodburn, James.
Publisher:
Date:
Luxury Fever: Why Money Fails to Satisfy in an Era of Excess Robert H Frank

Luxury Fever: Why Money Fails to Satisfy in an Era of Excess

Author: Robert H Frank
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Date:
The Evolution of Retirement: An American Economic History, 1880-1990 Dora L. Costa

The Evolution of Retirement: An American Economic History, 1880-1990

Author: Dora L. Costa
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Date:
Classes in Capitalism and Pre-Capitalism Karl Marx

Classes in Capitalism and Pre-Capitalism

Author: Karl Marx
Publisher: Westview Press, Inc
Date:
The Division of Labor in Society Durkheim, Emile

The Division of Labor in Society

Author: Durkheim, Emile
Publisher:
Date:

income and wealth - CPI Affiliates

John Roemer's picture John Roemer Elizabeth S. and A. Varick Professor of Political Sciences and Economics; Fellow, Econometric Society
Yale University
Thomas A. DiPrete's picture Thomas A. DiPrete Giddings Professor of Sociology; Co-Director, Institute for Social and Economic Research and Policy
Columbia University
John Van Reenen's picture John Van Reenen Professor of Applied Economics
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Tim Biblarz's picture Tim Biblarz Associate Professor of Sociology and Gender Studies
University of Southern California
Jonas Pontusson's picture Jonas Pontusson Professor of Comparative Politics
University of Geneva

Pages

Income And Wealth - Other Research

Title Author Media
Changes in Relative Wages, 1963-1987: Supply and Demand Factors Lawrence F. Katz and Murphy Katz

Changes in Relative Wages, 1963-1987: Supply and Demand Factors

Author: Lawrence F. Katz and Murphy Katz
Publisher: Quarterly Journal of Economics
Date:
The Social Stratification of Theatre, Dance, and Cinema Attendance Tak Wing Chan and John H. Goldthorpe

The Social Stratification of Theatre, Dance, and Cinema Attendance

Author: Tak Wing Chan and John H. Goldthorpe
Publisher: Routledge
Date:

In current sociological literature the relationship between social inequality and patterns of cultural taste and consumption is the subject of a large and complex debate. In this paper the primary aim is to examine, in the light of empirical results from a research project in which the authors are presently engaged, three main, and rival, positions that have been taken up in this debate, here labelled as the ‘homology', the ‘individualization' and the ‘omnivore–univore' arguments. Elsewhere, we have concentrated on musical consumption in England, and find evidence that is broadly supportive of the omnivore–univore argument. Here we ask whether such findings are confirmed in the case of theatre, dance and cinema attendance. A secondary aim of the paper is to bring to the attention of practitioners in the field of cultural policy and administration the need to address the issues that arise through the use of more powerful methods of data analysis than those often applied in the past. We explain how indicators of theatre, dance and cinema attendance derived from the Arts in England survey of 2001 can be subject to analysis so as to reveal two distinctive patterns of attendance and, in turn, two distinctive types of consumer—who can, it turns out, be regarded as omnivores and univores, even if with some qualification. The former have relatively high rates of attendance at all kinds of the events covered, including musicals and pantomimes as well as plays and ballet, while the latter tend to be cinema-goers only, that is, non-consumers of theatre and dance. A range of measures of social inequality are then introduced into the authors' analyses, including separate measures of social class and social status and also of educational level and income, and it is further shown that, again in conformity with the omnivore–univore argument, these two types of consumer are socially stratified. Omnivores are of generally higher social status than univores and also have usually higher levels of education and higher income than do univores (the latter finding marking the main difference with musical consumption, which was unaffected by income once other stratification variables were controlled). In sum, our results for theatre, dance and cinema attendance lend, overall, further support to the omnivore–univore argument as against its rivals, but also indicate that different aspects of social inequality impact on different forms of cultural consumption in varying degrees and probably through largely separate processes.

What Do Unions Do Freeman, Richard B. and James L. Medoff

What Do Unions Do

Author: Freeman, Richard B. and James L. Medoff
Publisher: Basic Books
Date:
Marxism and Class Theory: A Bourgeois Critique Frank Parkin

Marxism and Class Theory: A Bourgeois Critique

Author: Frank Parkin
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Date:

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Bad jobs in America : Standard and nonstandard employment relations and job quality in the United States Arne L. Kalleberg, Barbara F. Reskin and Ken...

Bad jobs in America : Standard and nonstandard employment relations and job quality in the United States

Author: Arne L. Kalleberg, Barbara F. Reskin and Ken...
Publisher: American Sociological Review
Date:

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