Article

Inequality: a three-decade story in eighteen charts

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Poverty Income distribution Wealth Weather Social inequality Financial inclusion Australia
Description

Has poverty declined or deepened in recent decades? Is inequality growing worldwide, and within most countries? Is Australia doing enough to help lift incomes and reduce inequality around the world?

The charts in this gallery – from a presentation I made at a reception for Oxfam supporters hosted by the Governor of Tasmania, Kate Warner, last week – attempt to answer these questions graphically. They begin by noting that the number of people living below the World Bank’s “extreme poverty line” of US$1.90 per day (in 2011 prices) has dropped by more than one billion, or 60 per cent, since the 1980s. But fully three-quarters of that decline has occurred in China (and about a third of the remainder in India). Elsewhere in the developing world, extreme poverty has fallen much more slowly: and indeed in sub-Saharan Africa the number of people living in extreme poverty has continued to increase. Moreover, a significant proportion of the world’s population who have escaped extreme poverty nonetheless remain very poor, by the standards of economies like ours…

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Publication place:
Melbourne