Economic Policy inequality ZEIT ONLINE op-ed column

Opportunity Credit to Safeguard the Future

The social divide did not first become obvious with the election of Donald Trump and the rise of right-wing populist extremists in Europe. In light of social inequality and uncertainty, political polarization and the mounting struggle for a piece of the pie come as little surprise. Policy makers must react by fundamentally rethinking social policy with the aim of improving people’s economic, social, and political participation, thereby affording them new opportunities.

An opportunity credit would be an excellent approach. Based … [continue reading]

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inequality ZEIT ONLINE op-ed column

The Shrinkage in Earned Income

This text was also published in German in ZEIT ONLINE on May 12 as part of the op-ed column “Fratzschers Verteilungsfragen“.

The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has attracted attention with its most recent World Economic Outlook. The report shows that the global workforce is receiving a decreasing proportion of economic output, whereas owners of capital are claiming a larger piece of the pie for themselves. Germany stands out as one of the countries where the proportion benefiting workers is … [continue reading]

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Economic Policy inequality ZEIT ONLINE op-ed column

Unconditional basic income does not equal more freedom

This text was also published in German in ZEIT ONLINE on April 28 as part of the op-ed column “Fratzschers Verteilungsfragen“.

“Freedom for the wolves has often meant death to the sheep,” noted British philosopher Isaiah Berlin as a way of describing the conflicts in industrial society. Technological change and globalization have brought great freedom and opportunity to some people. Many others, however, feel threatened by these developments. They are worried about their jobs and fear an increasing dependence on … [continue reading]

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Election2017 inequality ZEIT ONLINE op-ed column

In Germany, the poor are getting poorer

This text was also published in German in  ZEIT ONLINE on March 3rd  as part of the op-ed column “Fratzschers Verteilungsfragen“.

Recently, the Federal Government will soon present its fifth official Poverty and Wealth Report. But early leaks revealed the removal of passages concerning the richest citizens’ disproportionate political influence had already triggered widespread public outrage. Such an omission is especially troubling given that broad political participation – critical for a functional democracy – is lacking in Germany. In fact, … [continue reading]

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Economic Policy Public Finances and Financial Economics ZEIT ONLINE op-ed column

No envy, please!

This text was also published in German in  ZEIT ONLINE on February 3,  as part of the op-ed column “Fratzschers Verteilungsfragen“.

“Time for fairness“ is the motto of the new candidate for Chancellor of the German Social Democrats, Martin Schulz, in his campaign against Angela Merkel. The slogan is bound to strike a chord in a country where 70 percent of the people feel that inequality is too high. But the issue of fairness should not be the one at … [continue reading]

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