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Living Wage and Optimal Inequality in a Sarkarian Framework

Listed author(s):
  • Mark Friedman
Registered author(s):

    Principles from the social thought of the Indian philosopher P.R. Sarkar are employed to show that there exists an optimal level of economic inequality that joins the values of economic justice and efficiency. Sarkar favored establishing a living wage as well as a maximum wage that allows for work incentives. It is argued that the primary justification for inequality is to provide incentives for individual productivity, and that the value of those incentives should not exceed the economic contributions they produce. To determine the relative importance of income incentives in motivating individual economic contributions, it is found necessary to develop a multifaceted model of human productivity. Such a model is developed using concepts from humanistic psychology. A Sarkarian individual productivity curve is introduced in diagrammatic analysis to demonstrate the existence of an optimal level of inequality, and also to explain the persistence of extreme income inequality.

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    Article provided by Taylor & Francis Journals in its journal Review of Social Economy.

    Volume (Year): 66 (2008)
    Issue (Month): 1 ()
    Pages: 93-111

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    Handle: RePEc:taf:rsocec:v:66:y:2008:i:1:p:93-111
    DOI: 10.1080/00346760701668479
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