Economic Inequality: Measurement and International Comparisons

Economic Inequality: Measurement and International Comparisons



Mr Andrea Brandolini

Department for Structural Economic Analysis, Bank of Italy


Freie Universität Berlin, 17-19 April 2013

  1. Inequality analysis: motivation and background
  1. Inequality measurement
  2. Focal variable
  3. Measurement assumptions
  4. Inequality and poverty indices
  5. Top incomes

A. K. Sen (1992), Inequality Reexamined,Oxford: Clarendon Press.

A. K. Sen (1997), On Economic Inequality, expanded edition with a substantial annexe by J. E. Foster and A. K. Sen,Oxford: Clarendon Press.

A.B. Atkinson and A. Brandolini (2001), “Promises and Pitfalls in the Use of Secondary Data-Sets: Income Inequality in OECD Countries as a Case Study”, Journal of Economic Literature 39: 771-800.

A. B. Atkinson (2007), “Measuring Top Incomes: Methodological Issues”, in A. B. Atkinson and T. Piketty (eds.), Top Incomes Over the 20th Century. A Contrast Between Continental European and English-Speaking Countries, Oxford: OxfordUniversity Press.

F. Cowell (2011), Measuring Inequality, Oxford: OxfordUniversity Press.

  1. Income inequality in rich countries
  2. Cross-national differences
  3. National trends
  4. Government impact

A. Brandolini and T. M. Smeeding (2008), “Inequality Patterns in Western Democracies: Cross-Country Differences and Time Changes”, in P. Beramendi and C. Anderson (eds.), Democracy, Inequality and Representation, New York: Russell Sage Foundation.

A. Brandolini and T. M. Smeeding (2009), “Income Inequality in Richer and OECD Countries”, in W. Salverda, B. Nolan and T. M. Smeeding (eds.), Oxford Handbook on Economic Inequality, Oxford: OxfordUniversity Press.

3.4Supra-national entities: the World and the EU

A. Brandolini (2007), “Measurement of Income Distribution in Supranational Entities: The Case of the European Union”, in S. P. Jenkins and J. Micklewright (eds.), Inequality and Poverty Re-examined, Oxford: OxfordUniversity Press.

3.5The Great Recession (Department Seminar)

S. P. Jenkins, A. Brandolini, J. Micklewright and B. Nolan, eds. (2013), The Great Recession and the Distribution of Household Income, Oxford: OxfordUniversity Press.

  1. Explaining income inequality: an accounting framework

A.B. Atkinson and A. Brandolini (2006), “The Panel-of-Countries Approach to Explaining Income Inequality: An Interdisciplinary Research Agenda”, in S. L. Morgan, D. B. Grusky and G. S. Fields (eds.), Mobility and Inequality: Frontiers of Research from Sociology and Economics, Stanford, CA: StanfordUniversity Press.

  1. Leaving the income space
  2. Wealth: asset-based measurement of poverty

E. Sierminska, A. Brandolini and T. M. Smeeding (2006), “The Luxembourg Wealth Study – A Cross-Country Comparable Database for Household Wealth Research”, Journal of Economic Inequality 4: 375-383.

A. Brandolini, S. Magri and T. M. Smeeding (2010), “Asset-Based Measurement of Poverty”, Journal of Policy Analysis and Management 29: 267-284.

5.2Multidimensional measurement and the Capability Approach

A. Brandolini (2009), “On Applying Synthetic Indices of Multidimensional Well-Being: Health and Income Inequalities in France, Germany, Italy, and the United Kingdom”, in R. Gotoh and P. Dumouchel (eds.), Against Injustice. The New Economics of Amartya Sen, Cambridge: CambridgeUniversity Press.

A. Brandolini and G. D’Alessio (2009), “Measuring Well-Being in the Functioning Space”, in E. Chiappero-Martinetti (ed.), Debating Global Society: Reach and Limits of the Capability Approach, Milano: Fondazione Giangiacomo Feltrinelli.

  1. The middle class: income, property, and occupation

A.B. Atkinson and A. Brandolini (2013), “On the Identification of the Middle Class”, forthcoming in J. C. Gornick and M. Jäntti (eds.), Income Inequality: Economic Disparities and the Middle Class in Affluent Countries, Stanford: Stanford University Press.

Note: the lectures will be based on mentioned papers, which contain extensive references to the relevant literature.