Inequality

Two Eton Schoolboys by Francis Alleyne

The Omelas Institute‘s Inequality research is headed by Rebecca Durkin.

Economic inequality is growing on a global scale, with the world’s wealth increasingly concentrated into very few hands. The gap between the richest and poorest on a national level is also widening in countries across the world. Accompanying and contributing to this are a number of concerning developments: the increasing prevalence of exploitative working practices, the growth of precarious and low-paid work, and government policies which penalise the most vulnerable and benefit the most privileged members of society. The intersection of economic inequality with a range of other social inequalities means that the consequences of these developments often fall most heavily on the most marginalised communities.

All of this relates to questions of social justice, which has itself meant different things to different people at different times. It is an essentially contested concept, with some thinkers on the right (famously Hayek) going so far as to declare it meaningless and untenable. At its broadest level, social justice refers to matters of justice in society, and ways of working towards achieving social equity. It involves identifying and redressing injustice in society, be it related to economic issues, access to healthcare, education, housing, or myriad other phenomena.

The Omelas Institute is concerned with examining both the causes and consequences of this growing inequality, particularly in the United Kingdom. The Institute also aims to highlight existing and potential solutions to these problems, from community action to government policy.

Articles on inequality can be found here.