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Economic mobility around the world: New data and evidence

Monday, July 23, 2018 - 09:30 to 11:00

AEI, Auditorium
1789 Massachusetts Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20036

Join AEI as World Bank authors present their new study, “Fair Progress? Economic Mobility Across Generations Around the World,” which studies economic mobility not only in the developed world but also, for the first time, in developing economies using new data. The study examines whether people are destined to remain in the same economic circumstances into which they were born, and it looks back over a half century at whether children’s lives are better or worse than their parents’ in different parts of the world.

The panelists discussed the database’s importance and limitations. AEI’s Eric A. Hanushek framed the debate in the context of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. He called for measuring and improving education, which the report did not address. The Brookings Institution’s John McArthur remarked that the database is likely the start of a greater effort to initiate research on intergenerational mobility. The Joint Economic Committee’s Scott Winship added that absolute mobility should be a secondary indicator and that this database should be examined alongside income levels to understand global economic growth.