Global Inequality



REPORT: The Persistent Problem--Inequality, Difference, and the Challenge of Development REPORT: The Persistent Problem--Inequality, Difference, and the Challenge of Development

Released on July 10, 2008

Global levels of inequality today are at extremely high levels even as conditions for alleviating deprivation are more favorable than ever before.  Inequities in the international system and within developing countries threaten to halt progress toward greater democratization and economic development for the poorest countries in the world. 

The report by the Task Force on Difference, Inequality, and Development of the American Political Science Association, entitled The Persistent Problem: Inequality, Difference, and the Challenge of Development, highlights how these problems threaten efforts to alleviate deprivation such as the Millennium Development Goals.  It shows that in an increasingly interdependent world, international institutions should be made more accountable to poor countries if they are to maintain their legitimacy and effectiveness.

For democracy and capitalism to fulfill their promise of ending deprivation in developing countries, they must be based on institutions that reflect their distinctive histories and cultures. Deepening democratic processes in developing countries is essential for establishing political and economic institutions to equitably reflect local experiences. Effective change will be interactive, not imposed.

Full Report, Executive Summary, and Background Materials