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Sustainable Development Goals and Income Inequality

Edited by Peter A.G. van Bergeijk, Professor of International Economics and Macroeconomics and Rolph van der Hoeven, Professor Emeritus of Employment and Development Economics, International Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus University, The Hague, the Netherlands
This timely book documents and analyses the seriousness of growing national inequality in different regions around the world. It argues that the treatment of inequality in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is wholly insufficient due to their failure to recognise the growing difference between the income of work and the income of capital and the super rich, and the strain this places on a country’s social fabric.
Extent: c 232 pp
Hardback Price: $130.00 Web: $117.00
Publication Date: 2017
ISBN: 978 1 78811 027 3
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This timely book documents and analyses the seriousness of growing national inequality in different regions around the world. It argues that the treatment of inequality in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is wholly insufficient due to their failure to recognise the growing difference between the income of work and the income of capital and the super rich, and the strain this places on a country’s social fabric.

Sustainable Development Goals and Income Inequality provides a critical view on how inequality is dealt with in the process of setting global goals. It reviews the development of inequality globally and the various processes leading up to formulation of the SDGs. With chapters from top researchers on inequality and development economics it provides a strong and unique intellectual basis for a more prominent treatment of inequality in the follow up process to the SDGs.

Combining a global perspective and in-depth regional analysis, this book will be of interest to students and academics in sustainable development, social policy and development economics.
‘The Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations have set the most ambitious development agenda in history. For the first time, income inequality was included as a specific goal, and one that is essential to stem one of the worst trends that the world has been experiencing in recent decades. Ambitious political efforts will be needed to reverse this trend because without equality the inclusive and transformative development that the SDGs have set cannot be achieved. Providing accessible analysis and evidence-based policy advice, Sustainable Development Goals and Income Inequality is a must read for development researchers and practitioners, politicians and concerned citizens alike.’
– José Antonio Ocampo, Member of the Central Bank Board of Colombia, former UN Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs

‘Sustainable Development Goals and Income Inequality is a timely book. It discusses causes and consequences of the unprecedented rise of income inequality, and especially functional income inequality, over the last twenty years in developing countries. It demonstrates that the Sustainable Development Goals adopted in 2015, though acknowledging the inequality problem, provide only weak recommendations to stem this growing inequality. In this easily accessible book, well-known scholars thoroughly analyse and discuss policy alternatives for a more equal and transformative development process and portray what citizens and governments can do to achieve that.’
– Thandika Mkandawire, London School of Economics, former Director, United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD)

‘This book puts the post-2015 sustainable development agenda in thought-provoking perspective. The two editors and an expert group of leading thinkers and practitioners in the field of economic development take the reader on a most stimulating voyage into the realm of the MDGs and the SDGs. They pointedly ask whether the SDGs have the potential to address the thorny issues of inclusiveness in implementation, manageability, appropriate measurement and financial planning. The book departs from the need for transformative development and zooms in on the vast challenge of income inequality. A timely and much-needed contribution.’
– Finn Tarp, Director, UNU-WIDER
Contributors: T. Addison, G.A. Cornia, P. Edward, R. Jolly, M. Luebker, D. Nayyar, A. Sumner, P.A.G. van Bergeijk, R. van der Hoeven, J. Vandemoortele, R. Vos
Contents:

1. The challenge to reduce income inequality (introduction and overview)
Peter A.G. van Bergeijk and Rolph van der Hoeven

2. Broadening the development agenda for the SDG world
Richard Jolly

3. From MDGs to SDGs: critical reflections on global targets and their measurement
Jan Vandemoortele

4. From billions to trillions: towards reform of development finance and the global reserve system
Rob Vos

5. Global inequality and global poverty since the Cold War: how robust is the optimistic narrative?
Peter Edward and Andy Sumner

6. Is Latin America’s recent inequality decline permanent or temporary?
Giovanni Andrea Cornia

7. Thirty years in Africa’s development: from structural adjustment to structural transformation?
Tony Addison

8. Poverty, employment and inequality in the SDGs: heterodox discourse, orthodox policies?
Malte Luebker

9. Can catch up reduce inequality?
Deepak Nayyar

10. Can the SDGs stem rising income inequality in the world?
Rolph van der Hoeven

Index