Economic and social polarization dynamics in the EU
|Title||Economic and social polarization dynamics in the EU|
|Publication Type||Working Paper|
|Year of Publication||2021|
|Authors||Garau, G, Tola, A, Camerada, MV, Lampreu, S, Carrus, S|
|ISBN Number||978 88 68513 771|
|Keywords||Inequality, Poverty, Socio-economic polarization|
Inequality, from a social and economic point of view, produces a widespread sense of injustice, which culminates in the erosion of trust in institutions, politics, and the market economy. This is also relevant from a geopolitical perspective, especially when placed in correlation with the crisis of liberal democracies, often accompanied by the spread of nationalist currents capable of bringing into question the pillars of the EU system. In the past, differences in opportunity were prevalent only in less developed countries but recently, disparities have extended to Western countries and industrial economies as well. Financial crisis, market distortions, asymmetrical globalization and political choices are some of the factors underlying growing inequality around the world. We are seeing a progressive impoverishment of the middle class and the correlated concentration of national wealth in favor of a small minority (Stiglitz, 2014), the rise of a hyper-paid elite (Piketty, 2018; Saez and Zucman, 2019), and reduced upward economic mobility (Krueger, 2021). These phenomena should be considered in light of the aggregation of individual behaviors to better understand the increasing disintegration of the social fabric, which is in many cases considered the cause of the political metamorphosis of some States. This research analyzes statistical evidence with the aim of carrying out a comparative analysis between countries and regions, in order to assess dynamics of social and economic polarization in the EU. The results of the study, considered on a local scale, could contribute to better policy making to achieve the Agenda 2030 objectives.