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Jacobs Center for Productive Youth Development

Talk by Prof. Dr. Jonathan Jan Benjamin Mijs

The Social Life of Inequality: Why Unequal Countries Stay ThatWay (recorded talk)

April 21, 2023, 10:15 h
Andreasstrasse 15, 8050 Zurich, AND 4.06 (4th floor)

Vorschaubild Johnatan Mijs

Why have historically high levels of inequality been met with limited public consternation? Understanding why more economically unequal societies are less worried about inequality requires studying the “social life of inequality.” I argue that decades of growing inequality have increased the distance between the affluent and disadvantaged, who increasingly live their lives in separate neighborhoods, schools, and workplaces and befriend, date, and marry people from within their own socio-economic circles. This disconnect means that neither rich nor poor can see the full extent of inequality in their everyday life or appreciate the non-meritocratic causes of economic “success” and “failure.” In this talk, I will lay out my theoretical framework and research agenda for studying socially-situated belief formation and belief change, present preliminary findings, and discuss methodological strategies.

Flyer (PDF, 621 KB)