Book Review: The Globalization of Inequality

The Globalization of Inequality. By François Bourguignon . Translated by Thomas Scott-Railton . Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2015. 224 pp. ISBN 978-0691160528, $27.95 (Cloth).

Gary Fields of Cornell University recently wrote a book review in ILR Review for The Globalization of Inequality. An excerpt from the book review:

In this book, he [François Bourguignon] has produced a concise and nontechnical masterpiece of exceptional analytical and policy clarity. His professional expertise and policy involvement shine through in every chapter. Although the book is written for concerned global citizens, professional economists and other social scientists can learn much from reading it.

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Bourguignon begins by posing some provocative questions. Is globalization responsible for rising inequality in the world? Does this represent the death knell for equality? If it continues, will the quest for social justice be squelched?

His analysis makes a crucial distinction between three types of inequality in standards of living: inequality between countries, inequality within countries, and inequality among the world’s people. It is the last of these—what he terms “global inequality”—that is his primary concern and is at the heart of the book.

You can read the full review from ILR Review by clicking here. Like what you read? Click here to sign up for e-alerts and have all the research and reviews like this sent directly to your inbox!

How is the Media Hindering Gender Equality and Women’s Human Rights?

17202516813_12c72fab2a_z (1)The news media has the potential to play a critical role in improving gender equality and women’s human rights. However, the patriarchal nature of the media hinders such improvements. Media sexism and male-dominated power structures are continually shifting and finding new forms of representation and practice. The perpetuation of this system is materialized by different institutions—government, parties, schools and media—and through different mechanisms—laws and policies, curriculum and cultural products. Patriarchy in the media perpetuates traditional gender roles for both women and men. By associating women with the domestic sphere and men with the public, women are stereotyped as being less capable of working in the public sphere, including fields like politics, media, and education. The media could help empower women socially, politically and economically by reducing poverty, illiteracy, gender-based violence and social segregation. Instead, media content reproduces sexist stereotypes that discriminate against women.AME Cover

The issue is complex and involves gender representation in news content, participation of women as reporters and gender policies for news practices. An article entitled “News Media Coverage of Women” from the Asia Pacific Media Educator looks at this issue and offers some proposals to make the media a tool for improving gender equality and women’s human rights.

The most relevant initiative to take on this issue has come from the Global Alliance on Media and Gender (GAMAG). Launched in 2013 by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), GAMAG is a multi-stakeholder group that includes more than 500 organizations representing scholars, journalists and activists. The main goal of GAMAG is to combine efforts and resources to achieve gender equality in media systems, structures, and content, as well as to promote citizens’ media dialogue to ensure women’s freedom of expression, empowerment and full participation in society. GAMAG has the potential to produce change in the news media at different levels, including at the structural, content, and policy levels, but such change will take time.

The abstract:

News media organizations have the power to reinforce gender inequality through the dissemination of gender stereotypes. The issue is multidimensional and involves gender representation in news content, participation of women as reporters and gender policies for news practices. This article looks at this issue before, drawing on the work of Grizzle, offering some proposals to make news a tool for improving gender equality and women’s human rights.

You can read “News Media Coverage of Women” from Asia Pacific Media Educator free for the next two weeks by clicking here. Want to know all about the latest research from Asia Pacific Media EducatorClick here to sign up for e-alerts!

*Photo credited to Knight Foundation (CC)

All That Glitters is Not Gold: Pay Inequality in Hollywood

19764935991_a885f36e35_zThe gender-wage gap is not a newly discovered phenomenon, but recently, pay inequality has been pushed into the limelight by several outspoken actresses who are dissatisfied with the blatant gender-wage gap in Hollywood. While the gender-wage gap impacts women across many industries, pay inequality in the entertainment industry stands out in that gender and age both play a part in how much actors and actresses earn. In their paper, “Age, Gender, and Compensation: A Study of Hollywood Movie Stars,” published in Journal of Management Inquiryauthors Irene E. De Pater of National University of Singapore, Timothy A. Judge of University of Notre Dame, and Brent A. Scott of Michigan State University compare the average earnings of top actors and actresses to better understand the gender-wage gap in Hollywood.

The abstract:

Research on the gender-wage gap shows equivocal evidence regarding its magnitude, JMI_72ppiRGB_powerpointwhich likely stems from the different wage-related variables researchers include in their calculations. To examine whether pay differentials solely based on gender exist, we focused on the earnings of top performing professionals within a specific occupation to rule out productivity-related explanations for the gender-wage gap. Specifically, we investigated the interaction of gender and age on the earnings of Hollywood top movie stars. The results reveal that the average earnings per film of female movie stars increase until the age of 34 but decrease rapidly thereafter. Male movie stars’ average earnings per film reach the maximum at age 51 and remain stable after that.

You can read “Age, Gender, and Compensation: A Study of Hollywood Movie Stars” from Journal of Management Inquiry by clicking here. The paper was also cited in an article on, which you can read here.

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*Jennifer Lawrence image credited to Gage Skidmore (CC)

Calling for Papers on Reducing Inequality in Organizations!

note-pad-1206626-mDo you have research on reducing inequality in organizations? ILR Review is now accepting papers for a conference and a subsequent special issue devoted to identifying and developing organizational practices and processes that affect workplace inequality, diversity, and inclusion. Emilio J.Castilla (MIT) and Pamela S.Tolbert (ILR, Cornell) will be the guest editors of the issue.

Potential topics include (but are not limited to):

  • Organizational conditions affecting differential treatment in recruiting, screening, training, and hiring decisions
  • ILR_72ppiRGB_powerpointThe impact of organizational recruitment and selection procedures on hiring (and post-hiring) outcomes
  • Aspects and features of organizations that affect occupational and job-level segregation based on gender and race
  • Conditions facilitating workplace relations in diverse groups and teams inside organizations
  • The effects of various organizational practices and policies on the promotion and retention of women and minorities
  • Organizational arrangements that affect race- and gender-related differences in training, promotion, and compensation outcomes
  • Organizational forms and work arrangements that influence workplace inequality, diversity, and inclusion
  • Differential impacts of social policies and organizational practices on labor market outcomes (e.g., by race and by gender)

Scholars interested in participating should submit a detailed abstract to the ILR Review by February 1, 2015. For more information, including where to submit your abstract, click here!

Want to keep up-to-date on all the latest news and research from ILR Review? Click here to sign up for e-alerts!

Public Finance Review’s Special Issue: Analyzing the Redistributive Impact of Taxes and Transfers in Latin America

export-5-475101-mWhile Latin America is taking in more tax revenue cumulatively than it did twenty years ago, the International Business Times reported in 2012 that the income gap between the wealthy and the poor is still drastically wide, with the richest 20 percent making 20 times more than the poorest 20 percent. So what’s changed in the recent past? What can be done in the future? Public Finance Review recently published a special issue titled Analyzing the Redistributive Impact of Taxes and Transfers in Latin America that looks at various aspects of these ideas and is available to read for free for the next 30 days!

Nora Lustig, Carola Pessino, and John Scott collaborated on the introductory article “The Impact of Taxes and Social Spending on Inequality and Poverty in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay: Introduction to the Special Issue.”

The abstract:

How much redistribution and poverty reduction is being accomplished in Latin America through social spending, subsidies, and taxes? Standard fiscal incidence analyses applied toPFR_72ppiRGB_powerpoint Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay using a comparable methodology yields the following results. Direct taxes and cash transfers reduce inequality and poverty by nontrivial amounts in Argentina, Brazil, and Uruguay but less so in Bolivia, Mexico, and Peru. While direct taxes are progressive, the redistributive impact is small because direct taxes as a share of GDP are generally low. Cash transfers are quite progressive in absolute terms, except in Bolivia where programs are not targeted to the poor. In Bolivia and Brazil, indirect taxes more than offset the poverty-reducing impact of cash transfers. When one includes the in-kind transfers in education and health, valued at government costs, they reduce inequality in all countries by considerably more than cash transfers, reflecting their relative size.

Click here to read “The Impact of Taxes and Social Spending on Inequality and Poverty in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay: Introduction to the Special Issue” and here for the table of contents to of Public Finance Review’s Special Issue: Analyzing the Redistributive Impact of Taxes and Transfers in Latin America. Make sure to sign up for e-alerts from Public Finance Review by clicking here!

Whose Jobs Are These?

women_cfosIn firms with more female managers, are newly created jobs more likely to be filled by men or by women?

Lisa E. Cohen of McGill University and Joseph P. Broschak of the University of Arizona uncover the answer and its implications for practice in their study, “Whose Jobs Are These? The Impact of the Proportion of Female Managers on the Number of New Management Jobs Filled by Women versus Men,” forthcoming in Administrative Science Quarterly and now available in the journal’s OnlineFirst section:

asq150In this paper, we examine the relationship between an organization’s proportion of female managers and the number of new management jobs initially filled by women versus men. We draw on theories of job differentiation, job change, and organizational demography to develop theory and predictions about this relationship and whether the relationship differs for jobs filled by female and male managers. Using data on a sample of New York City advertising agencies over a 13-year period, we find that the number of newly created jobs first filled by women increases with an agency’s proportion of female managers. In contrast, the effect of the proportion of female managers on the number of new management jobs filled by men is positive initially but plateaus and turns negative. In showing these influences on job creation, we highlight the dynamic and socially influenced nature of jobs themselves: new jobs are created regularly in firms and not merely as a response to technical and administrative imperatives. The results also point to another job-related process that differs between women and men and that could potentially aggravate, mitigate, or alleviate inequality: the creation of jobs. Thus this research contributes to literatures on demography, the organization of work, and inequality.

Continue reading the article online in Administrative Science Quarterly, and sign up for e-alerts here so you don’t miss out on ASQ’s latest articles and issues.

Toxic Pollution and School Performance Scores

Cristina Lucier, Boston College, Anna Rosofsky, Bruce London, both of Clark University, Helen Scharber, Hampshire College, and John M. Shandra, SUNY Stony Brook, published “Toxic Pollution and School Performance Scores: Environmental Ascription in East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana” on December 20th, 2011 in Organization & Environment. To view other OnlineFirst articles, please click here.

The abstract:

The current study adds to the literature linking environmental pollution and disparities in educational outcomes among vulnerable populations by measuring variations in school performance scores in East Baton Rouge (EBR) Parish, Louisiana. The authors ask whether the unique, placespecific, results of a study such as the 2004 study by Pastor, Sadd, and Morello-Frosch, specifically the finding that schools’ academic performance scores are negatively related to proximity to major polluters, can be made somewhat more “general” by examining a similar relationship in another location. The authors closely approximate the model and methodology used by Pastor et al. and then respecify that model by including new independent variables with a particular focus on alternative and more nuanced measures of proximity to polluters as indicators of potential human exposure. Furthermore, they analyze the relationship between proximity and achievement in terms of disproportionate effects on human capital experienced by vulnerable populations. The findings provide evidence of “environmental ascription,” the idea that “place” (especially, attending school in polluted places) has ascriptive properties. The authors find that, all else equal, their several measures of proximity (to Toxics Release Inventory facilities in general, to high concentrations of toxic emissions, and to high-volume polluters of developmental neurotoxins) are significantly related to school performance scores throughout EBR Parish.

To learn more about Organization & Environment, please follow this link.

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