We know (e.g., as a result of the 2013 Pew Research Center survey) that most people in the world believe that current economic arrangements favor the well-off and that economic inequality is a very big problem.*
And they’re right: the economy system in most countries is fundamentally unfair (favoring those at the top over everyone else) and that, as a result, the gap (between those at the top and everyone else) is a problem that needs to be solved—if not within the current economy system, then in a different one.
But we also know, since at least the pioneering study by Dan Ariely and Michael I. Norton, that people’s beliefs about inequality are quite different from actual levels of inequality. That notion is confirmed by a new study, by Vladimir Gimpelson and Daniel Treisman, „Misperceiving Inequality.“ What they show is that, on a wide variety of measures (of…
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