Explaining Inequality

By Maurizio Franzini, Mario Pianta

© 2016 – Routledge

118 pages | 16 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415703482
pub: 2015-11-24
US Dollars$49.95
Hardback: 9780415703499
pub: 2015-11-27
US Dollars$150.00

e–Inspection Copy

About the Book

Inequalities in incomes and wealth have increased in advanced countries, making our economies less dynamic, our societies more unjust and our political processes less democratic. As a result, reducing inequalities is now a major economic, social and political challenge. This book provides a concise yet comprehensive overview of the economics of inequality.

Until recently economic inequality has been the object of limited research efforts, attracting only modest attention in the political arena; despite important advances in the knowledge of its dimensions, a convincing understanding of the mechanisms at its roots is still lacking. This book summarizes the topic and provides an interpretation of the mechanisms responsible for increased disparities. Building on this analysis the book argues for an integrated set of policies addressing the roots of inequalities in incomes and wealth

Explaining Inequality will be of interest to students, researchers and practitioners concerned with inequality, economic and public policy and political economy.


This book provides a timely and incisive study of inequality. While Piketty’s opus was fundamental in providing evidence for the rising trend in inequality, this book looks at different factors - technological, institutional and oligarchic - that help explain why a simple wealth tax is not the (only) answer.

Mariana Mazzucato, University of Sussex, UK.

Table of Contents

Introduction: Inequality Matters 1. Explaining Inequality 2. Market Outcomes: Income Distribution, Finance, Technology and Labour Markets 3. Family Matters: Human Capital and Intergenerational Inequality 4. State (In) action: Redistribution and Welfare Policies 5. Conclusions: New Policies on Inequality

About the Authors

Maurizio Franzini is Full Professor of Economic Policy, Sapienza University of Rome, Italy.

Mario Pianta is Full Professor of Economic Policy, University of Urbino, Italy.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Business Ethics
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economic History
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / Macroeconomics
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Marketing / Research
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / Microeconomics
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / General