The Challenge of Economic Inequality to Recovery and Wellbeing


19 - 21/06/2014
00:00:00 - 00:00:00
The Challenge of Economic Inequality to Recovery and Wellbeing

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The economic model of the European Union is in its deepest crisis since its inception. There is both a financial crisis and a real sector crisis with stagnating economies, rising inequalities and increasing divergence between the countries of the European union. Economic inequality is at the centre of that crisis.

Rising unemployment in Europe has been accompanied by a significant increase in social and income inequalities. Recent Oxfam reports shows that in some European countries the richest ten per cent of the population saw their share of the total income greatly increased. In others, an increase has been recorded in the percentage of the poor within the total population. In many cases these phenomena have occurred in parallel.

It is becoming increasingly evident that European macroeconomic policy has an excessive focus on inflation rather than on employment, which is driving inequality. Furthermore, the financial crisis has clearly shown the existence of a strong nexus between the growth of finance, inequalities and the job drought in Europe.

In this context, it is vital for progressive policy makers to clearly define and promote a set of policy proposals to break the nexus between current macroeconomic policies, finance and inequality.

This year’s TASC-FEPS conference will focus on three core issues:

  1. The multidimensional aspects of inequality and the relationship between economic inequality and wider measures of personal and societal wellbeing;
  2. The impact of current neoliberal economic policies on inequality and discussion of policy proposals to embark on a more equitable and sustainable developmental trajectory; and
  3. Policy proposals to break the nexus between the growth of finance and inequality. These ideas encompass changes in regulation, financial structure, and financial and investment policies.
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