Our future depends on the choices we make today

Our future depends on the choices we make today

As long as poverty, injustice and gross inequality persist in our world, none of us can truly rest. - Nelson Mandela

The aim of SDG 10, defined by the U.N., is to: "Reduce income inequality within and among countries", by 2030, and it’s complementary to SDG 1.

Credit: pexels.com

Credit: pexels.com

Trends from the last few years showed a generalised increase of inequalities all over the world, thus leading to poverty and social conflicts, but also to globalized capitalism. This is what emerged from the 2018 World Inequality Report, presented in mid December 2018 in Paris, France. The Report showed that the level of disparity in wealth distribution is really high from one region to another. In Europe, 37 percent of the Gross Domestic Product is in the hands of just 10 percent, 41 percent in China, 46 percent in Russia, 47 percent in North America and 55 percent in Sub-Saharan Africa, Brazil and India. The Middle East has the highest value, with 61 percent. Data concerning the African economic development are the most alarming. However, Africa has a strong demographic growth: it hosts 17 percent of the global population and this is expected to reach 26 percent by 2050.  

The United States, China, India and Russia saw the highest increase of inequalities from 1980 to 2016. In the old continent, instead, the portion of wealth held by the top 1 percent has increased less: it has gone from 10 to 12 percent. 

Researchers working on the Report stated that “the income-inequality trajectory observed in the United States is largely due to massive educational inequalities, combined with a tax system that grew less progressive, focal point of the liberalist economic theories.” This can be seen as a positive thing, because it means that institutions possess the means to limit inequalities and to contrast the structural tendencies of capitalism, which extend the gap between rich and poor.

The Report also underlined that the increase in inequalities grew alongside another phenomenon: the decrease of wealth owned by the public compared to private wealth. The study explained that “there has been a general rise in net private wealth in recent decades, from 200-350 percent of national income in most rich countries in 1970 to 400-700 percent today.”

The United Nations indicated some useful targets to put into action, in order to reduce all kind of inequalities, which can be found here

Reduce inequalities means eradicate poverty and social discrimination.  Everyone deserves to have the same opportunities as others. If people who have economic possibilities to help others contributed to the wellness of people in poor conditions, we would live in a more equal world, and the richness would be more fairly divided.

Thumbnail image credit: pixabay.com

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