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Fair and unfair income inequalities in Europe

  • Daniele Checchi

    (University of Milan)

  • Vito Peragine


    (University of Bari)

  • Laura Serlenga

    (University of Bari)

This paper analyses the extent of income inequality and opportunity inequality in 25 European countries. The present work contributes to understanding the origin of standard income inequality, helping to identify potential institutional setups that are associated to opportunity inequality. We distinguish between ex-ante and ex-post opportunity inequality. We find that ex-ante equality of opportunity exhibits positive correlation with public expenditure in education, whereas ex-post equality of opportunity is also positively associated to union presence and to fiscal redistribution.

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Paper provided by ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality in its series Working Papers with number 174.

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Length: 39 pages
Date of creation: 2010
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:inq:inqwps:ecineq2010-174
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  1. Flavio Cunha & James Heckman, 2007. "The Technology of Skill Formation," NBER Working Papers 12840, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Alberto Alesina & Eliana La Ferrara, 2001. "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," NBER Working Papers 8267, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  3. Laura Serlenga & Vito Peragine, 2007. "Higher education and equality of opportunity in Italy," Working Papers 79, ECINEQ, Society for the Study of Economic Inequality.
  4. Nicolas Pistolesi, 2009. "Inequality of opportunity in the land of opportunities, 1968–2001," Journal of Economic Inequality, Springer, vol. 7(4), pages 411-433, December.
  5. Fleurbaey, Marc, 2008. "Fairness, Responsibility, and Welfare," OUP Catalogue, Oxford University Press, number 9780199215911.
  6. Bourguignon, François & Ferreira, Francisco & Menéndez, Marta, 2007. "Inequality of Opportunity in Brazil," Economics Papers from University Paris Dauphine 123456789/1552, Paris Dauphine University.
  7. Villar Antonio, 2005. "On the Welfare Evaluation of Income and Opportunity," The B.E. Journal of Theoretical Economics, De Gruyter, vol. 5(1), pages 1-21, June.
  8. Van Kerm, Philippe, 2007. "Extreme incomes and the estimation of poverty and inequality indicators from EU-SILC," IRISS Working Paper Series 2007-01, IRISS at CEPS/INSTEAD.
  9. Juan D. Moreno-Ternero, 2007. "On the design of equal-opportunity policies," Investigaciones Economicas, Fundación SEPI, vol. 31(3), pages 351-374, September.
  10. Frank A. Cowell & Maria-Pia Victoria-Feser, 2002. "Welfare Rankings in the Presence of Contaminated Data," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 70(3), pages 1221-1233, May.
  11. La Ferrara, Eliana & Alesina, Alberto, 2005. "Preferences for Redistribution in the Land of Opportunities," Scholarly Articles 4552533, Harvard University Department of Economics.
  12. François Bourguignon & Francisco H. G. Ferreira & Marta Menendez, 2003. "Inequality of Outcomes and Inequality of Opportunities in Brasil," DELTA Working Papers 2003-24, DELTA (Ecole normale supérieure).
  13. Kranich, Laurence, 1996. "Equitable Opportunities: An Axiomatic Approach," Journal of Economic Theory, Elsevier, vol. 71(1), pages 131-147, October.
  14. Bourguignon, Francois & Ferreira, Francisco H. G. & Walton, Michael, 2006. "Equity, Efficient and Inequality Traps: A Research Agenda," Working Paper Series rwp06-025, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  15. Cowell, Frank A & Victoria-Feser, Maria-Pia, 1996. "Robustness Properties of Inequality Measures," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 64(1), pages 77-101, January.
  16. Cowell, Frank A. & Victoria-Feser, Maria-Pia, 1996. "Poverty measurement with contaminated data: A robust approach," European Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 40(9), pages 1761-1771, December.
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