Economic Inequality (PEC4124.01)

Lopamudra Banerjee

Economic inequality is not only a matter of uneven distribution of resources, income and wealth amongst people, but, more importantly, that of asymmetries in their access to options, opportunities and advantages. Why do some people have better quality of life than the others? Why do some people have better chances of achieving favorable outcomes in their life than the others? Are such distributional asymmetries justifiable? These are the questions that will motivate our seminar. To illustrate how these questions can be empirically explored, we will study certain fundamental tools of cross-sectional and panel data analyses using household survey datasets. We will draw upon theories in welfare economics to describe and derive measures of income and wealth inequality. We will explore theories in political philosophy and distributive justice to examine how normative questions on inequality are tackled in economics. The seminar will be designed for students in their third and fourth years of college. The prerequisites for this course include at least one prior 2000-level course in economics along with at least one prior 2000-level course in SCT. Some prior knowledge of data analyses is desirable, and, some prior knowledge of statistical theory/applications will be advantageous.

Prerequisites: Prioritization of registration: Students should email the course instructor with an expression of interest, and explain [in few sentences] [a] why they are interested in this course, [b] if the course fit with their academic plan, and, if yes, then how, [c] if they fulfill the prerequisites for the course and what courses [that would satisfy the prerequisite criterion] have they taken before[stating the course name and level of prior courses in economics/political economy, SCT, mathematics etc. The emails should be received by April 30th.
Credits: 4
M 12:10pm - 2:00pm; W 12:10pm - 2:00pm
Maximum Enrollment: 12
Course Frequency:
This course is categorized as All courses, Four Credit, 4000, Political Economy, Monday and/or Thursday Afternoons, Wednesday Afternoons, Lopamudra Banerjee, and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , .