5 Big Ideas in Inequality - II

THIS WEEK: 6 BIG IDEAS  |  NOV 02 2020

00:38 | Idea 1 - Heather Boushey
09:37 | Idea 2 - Lucas Chancel
19:38 | Idea 3 - Nathaniel Hendren
25:58 | Idea 4 - Anna Stansbury
36:00 | Idea 5 - Will Dobbie
44:41 | Idea 6 - Felix Owusu
58:10 | Q&A




Heather BousheyIDEA 1

A call to action
New metrics for a new economic agenda

Heather Boushey
President and CEO and Co-Founder
Washington Center for Equitable Growth

"Adding distribution to our national conversation about our core economic metric could facilitate the diagnosis of what inequality means in our economy and our society.

And it could allow us to understand not only how growth is distributed, but what kinds of policies we need to make sure that we are on a stronger path moving forward."

For further reading


How Inequality Constricts Our Economy and What We Can Do about It

By Heather Boushey
Harvard University Press, 2019.

Unbound, by Heather Boushey


Lucas ChancelIDEA 2

Unsustainable inequalities:
Social justice and the environment

Lucas Chancel
Co-Director of the World Inequality Lab
Paris School of Economics

Lucas Chancel slide

On the need to map and track social-ecological inequalities: "We live in a data-abundant world, but we do not have the public service of inequality data.

This is true when you think about income and wealth, but this is even more true when we think about who pollutes, which income groups, which geographic areas, and who is impacted by pollution."


Unsustainable Inequalities

Social Justice and the Environment

By Lucas Chancel
Harvard University Press, 2020.

Unsustainable Inequalities, by Lucas Chancel


Nathaniel HendrenIDEA 3

Investing in low-income children pays us back

Nathaniel Hendren
Professor of Economics
and a Founding Co-Director of Opportunity Insights
Harvard University

Nathan Hendren slide

For further reading

Hendren, Nathaniel, and Ben Sprung-Keyser. 2020. “A Unified Welfare Analysis of Government Policies.” Quarterly Journal of Economics 135 (3): 1209-1318.

Interactive site: Explore the estimates at policyinsights.org.



Anna StansburyIDEA 4

To tackle inequality, (re)build worker power

Anna Stansbury
PhD candidate in Economics
Stone PhD Scholar in Inequality and Wealth Concentration
Harvard University

Anna Stansbury slide

For further reading

Stansbury, Anna, and Lawrence H. Summers. The Declining Worker Power Hypothesis: An Explanation for the Recent Evolution of the American Economy. Brookings Papers on Economic Activity (Spring 2020).




Will S. DobbieIDEA 5


Reducing racial disparities in the pre-trial system

Will S. Dobbie
Professor of Public Policy
Harvard Kennedy School

Will Dobbie slide






Felix OwusuIDEA 6

Reimagining public safety
Thinking beyond the criminal system

Felix Owusu
PhD candidate in Public Policy
Stone PhD Scholar in Inequality 
Harvard University

Felix Owusu slide

For further reading

Racial Disparities in the Massachusetts Criminal System
A report by the Criminal Justice Policy Program, Harvard Law School. Submitted to Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants, Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts (Sep 2020).
Authors: Elizabeth Tsai Bishop, Brook Hopkins, Chijindu Obiofuma, Felix Owusu.

Dissecting racial disparities in the Massachusetts criminal justice system
Interview with Felix Owusu. Harvard Gazette (Sep 10, 2020).