Global Inequality

Report Release: July 10 Event at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace Report Release: July 10 Event at Carnegie Endowment for International Peace


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

WHAT:  Inequality and difference pose relentless challenges even though conditions for alleviating deprivation are more favorable than ever before.  The persistent problem of inequality is that it enables dominant actors to create institutions and policies that favor their interests even when they are not in the best interests of society as a whole. At the international level, this has resulted in a pattern of globalization that limits the potential benefits of  international markets to the poorest countries. At the domestic level in poor countries, inequality has enabled elites to perpetuate inefficient institutions at a time when globalization gives a premium for efficient ones.  The new report by the Task Force on Difference, Inequality, and Development of the   American Political Science Association 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.

The Carnegie Endowment and the APSA will host a discussion on the report’s findings and the implications for policy makers in developing and developed countries.

WHEN:   Thursday, July 10, 2008, 9:00 to 11:00 a.m.

WHERECarnegie Endowment for International Peace, 1779 Massachusetts Ave, Washington, D.C.

RSVP:   Katie Donaldson, [email protected], by 12 noon on Wednesday, July 9.  Space is limited.



  • John Echeverri-Gent is the chair of the American Political Science Task Force on “Difference and Inequality in Developing Societies” and associate professor at the University of Virginia. His current research investigates the political construction of capital markets in developing countries.
  • Gerard Alexander is a Visiting Scholar at the American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research.  His current research focuses on the growth of government, ways in which its role has been limited or reduced and America's policy of democratization abroad and the conditions for stable democracy. He is author of The Sources of Democratic Consolidation (2002).


George Perkovich is vice president for studies–global security and economic development at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.


The Task Force on Difference, Inequality, and Developing Societies was convened by Susanne Rudolph (University of Chicago) during her term as APSA president and is part of APSA’s effort to promote the public presence of the discipline.  It is comprised of 13 prominent political scientists and conducted its research from 2004-2007. Other forthcoming task force reports include Political Violence and Terror (2008) and Religion and Democracy in the United States (2009).

The American Political Science Association (est. 1903) is the leading professional organization for the study of politics and has over 14,000 members in 80 countries. For more news and information about political science research visit the APSA media website,

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