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Fighting Inequality to 'Bend the Arc' of History

Otaviano Canuto's picture

When World Bank President Jim Yong Kim addressed the joint boards of governors of the Bank and the IMF in Tokyo last month, he took a powerful theme. President Kim cited Dr Martin Luther King's optimistic view, that while "the arc of the moral universe is long, it bends towards justice." With this starting point, President Kim talked of his and the Bank's resolve to pursue justice, "because wherever there is poverty and inequality, there is too often injustice." The scenario driving him, he said, "is the path where we come together to bend the arc of history and accelerate progress."

Save the Children's new report, Born Equal, presents new evidence on just how far we will have to bend the arc. The study uses data for 32 developing countries and constructs a measure of income inequality between the richest and poorest deciles of households, and finds it to be twice as high for children as for the general population. Children in the richest decile have, on average, 35 times the available income of children in the poorest decile. In addition, this ratio has increased by a third since the 1990s.

» Continue reading at Save the Children's Uncounted blog