Panel Chair: Irwin Garfinkel (bio), Columbia University
Discussant: Liana Fox (bio), U.S. Census Bureau
Robert Allen Manduca, Harvard University
Paper: Income Inequality and Persistence of Racial Economic Disparities
Naomi Zewde (bio), Postdoctoral Research Scientist, Columbia University
Paper: Universal Baby Bonds Reduce Racial Wealth Inequality, Improve Net Asset Position of Young Adults
Five years after the publication of French economist Thomas Piketty’s widely hailed Capital in the Twenty-First Century, the challenge of economic inequality has become salient both in policy circles and among the general public. At a panel taking place at the Association for Public Policy & Analysis Management (APPAM) this Friday, chaired by Interim Dean Irwin Garfinkel and featuring the work of CSSW doctoral candidate Laurel Sariscany and CSSW postdoctoral research scientist Naomi Zewde, discussion will focus on how to properly characterize and address this challenge in the United States, in all its particulars. On the one hand, income inequality in the economy overall is on the rise, with a growing share of income held by the top few percent of earners. On the other, income differences between men and women and between racial groups having diminished or stayed the same over the past several decades. By contrast, wealth inequality has largely grown nationwide, and between races and genders.
Improvement towards equality in any of these areas will require understanding how inequalities in all three can reinforce or counteract each other. How has economic inequality interacted with gender and racial differences over time, and what can be done about it? Who is at a disadvantage and to what degree? Do women hold fewer assets than their male counterparts? Could universal programs aimed at improving the economic positions of all Americans and reducing overall economic inequality have spill-over effects for historically dis-advantaged groups? Developing innovative programs to successfully reduce inequality across these domains requires engaging with the evidence on how they are interlinked.