The decades since 1980 have seen sharply rising income and wealth inequality in a number of developed countries, notably the US and UK. The rise is particularly marked at the top of the income distribution, and there is little sign that this has been reversed by the current economic crisis. Many countries have also experienced a stagnation in middle class income growth and declines in social mobility. INET Oxford researchers are playing a leading role collecting and analysing data on income and wealth inequality from around the world, and analysing the causes of this shift. Our scholars are also investigating the links between trends in inequality and different modes of economic growth, technology, globalisation, labour market arrangements, the financial system, and public policies.
INET Oxford's Research Themes
Our World in Data
On this web publication we are presenting the long-term research on how and why living conditions around the world are changing.
The Intergenerational Transmission of Family Wealth
This project, supported by the Nuffield Foundation, is investigating the direct transmission of wealth across generat...
The threat of social decline: income inequality and radical right support
03 Mar 20
We argue that rising inequality not only intensifies relative deprivation, but also signals a potent...
No. 2020-03 - Social class and earnings: a cross-national study
17 Jan 20
In this paper, we utilize data from the European Union Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (E...
No. 2020-01 - MetaSILC 2015: A Report on the Contents and Comparability of the EU-SILC Income Variables
16 Jan 20
In this report, we document and analyse how individual income components are aggregated into the EU-...
No. 2019-17 - A note on the replication of the European Socio-economic Classification (ESeC) in the EU Statistics on Income and Living Conditions (EU-SILC)
01 Dec 19
In this research note, I document the data quality of EU-SILC in terms of measuring ESeC, and propos...
No. 2019-15 - Putting inadequate incomes at the heart of food insecurity. A Study of the financial constraints to access a healthy diet in Europe
11 Nov 19
In this paper, we try to assess the role of adequate incomes and minimum income policies in having a...
Bringing Women on Board: The Social Policy Implications of Gender Diversity in Top Jobs
31 Oct 19
This paper argues that analyses of the gendered character of welfare states should be broadened to i...
The Technology Trap: Capital, Labor, and Power in the Age of Automation
18 Jun 19
How the history of technological revolutions can help us better understand economic and political po...
No. 2019-09 - Has the Middle Secured Its Share of Growth or Been Squeezed?
17 Jun 19
In striking contrast to the notion that democracy is under threat because ‘the middle’ has been ‘squ...
No. 2019-07 - Inequality and Real Income Growth for Middle and Low-income Households Across Rich Countries in Recent Decades
06 Jun 19
This paper places what has happened to income inequality in rich countries over recent decades along...
No. 2019-08 - Firm Heterogeneity and the Aggregate Labour Share
04 Jun 19
Using a static model of firm behaviour with imperfect competition on the product and labour markets,...
No. 2019-06 - Insiders under pressure: Flexible employment and wage inequality
31 May 19
This paper explores whether the deregulation of flexible employment exacerbates wage inequality amon...
No. 2019-05 - The Median Versus Inequality-Adjusted GDP as Core Indicator of ‘Ordinary’ Household Living Standards in Rich Countries
30 May 19
This paper first highlights the extent to which GDP per head will be unreliable as an indicator of h...
Dr Penny Mealy: Navigating knowledge: new tools for the journey
23 May 19
Like the wind, knowledge can be difficult to see or grasp, but if well-harnessed, it can help us do ...
The economics of mobile money: Harnessing the transformative power of technology to benefit the gobal poor
08 May 19
No. 2019-04 - What Happened to the 'Great American Jobs Machine'?
18 Apr 19
In the 1980s and 1990s the US employment rate increased steadily. Since then it has declined both in...
Intergenerational class mobility in Europe: A new account
22 Mar 19
Forthcoming in Social Forces
The economics of mobile money: Harnessing the transformative power of technology to benefit the global poor
13 Mar 19
Forthcoming Oxford Martin School Policy Paper
Prof Mariana Mazzucato: The value of everything: rediscovering purpose in the economy
31 Jan 19
This talk will argue that modern economic theory has led to the confusion between profits and rents,...
No. 2018-07 - People do not adapt to income changes: A re-evaluation of the dynamic effects of (reference) income on life satisfaction with GSOEP and UKHLS data
06 Nov 18
Do people adapt to changes in income? This paper shows that there is no evidence of adaptation to in...
No. 2018-15 - The Drivers of Inequality in Rich Countries
31 Oct 18
Rising income inequality has recently come centre-stage as a core societal concern for rich countrie...
Overcoming Wealth Inequality by Capital Taxes that Finance Public Investment
01 Oct 18
We examine how increased public investment financed by higher capital taxes affects the distribution...
Inequality and ordinary living standards in rich countries
03 Aug 18
Country contexts really matter, and policy responses must be framed in light of the institutional po...
Housing, Debt and the Economy: a Tale of Two Countries
02 Aug 18
Department of Economics Discussion Paper Series
Inequality and Inclusive Growth in Rich Countries: Shared Challenges and Contrasting Fortunes
28 Jun 18
GDP Per Capita Versus Median Household Income: What Gives Rise to the Divergence Over Time and how does this Vary Across OECD Countries?
17 May 18
Rising Income Inequality and Living Standards in OECD Countries: How Does the Middle Fare?
15 May 18
Income inequality has increased in a number of the rich democratic nations over the past generation....
INET Briefing Note: Women Leading UK Employment Boom
28 Feb 18
No. 2018-05 - Sifting through the ASHE: Job Polarisation and Earnings Inequality in the UK, 1975-2015
21 Dec 17
Reducing poverty and inequality through tax-benefit reform and the minimum wage: the UK as a case-study
06 Dec 17
This paper assesses the first-round effects of tax, transfer and minimum wage reforms on income ineq...
Prof Brian Nolan: Children of austerity: impact of the great recession on child poverty in rich countries
13 Nov 17
The 2008 financial crisis triggered the first contraction of the world economy in the post-war era. ...