Session I: The Ins and Outs of Inequality Measures





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Published on Sep 19, 2013

Nancy Birdsall, Center for Global Development
Alex Cobham, Center for Global Development
James Foster, George Washington University
Nora Lustig, Tulane University
Martin Ravallion, Georgetown University
Moderator: Lawrence MacDonald, Center for Global Development

Event Overview:
The gap between the richest and poorest countries -- and people -- not only persists, it is getting larger. In developing countries in particular, inequality is frequently economically destructive, interacting with underdeveloped markets and ineffective government programs to slow growth -- which in turn slows progress in reducing poverty.

This CGD conference brought together technical experts and policymakers to consider the strengths and weaknesses of various approaches to measuring and understanding inequality—and the potential application of these measures in setting national and global policy targets, including within the United Nations post-2015 development goals. It is intended as a substantive, technical contribution to the ongoing debate about what measures of inequality are useful in what settings, and how to include these in national and international policy goals.

The event included two panels: the first comprised of experts on measurement approaches and issues; and a second panel of individuals drawn from development institutions, governments, and civil society.


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