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Fresh studies shine new light on global income inequality

Widening gap is probably due to a disparity of a different kind: the outsize impact of rich-country pundits and news outlets on international debates.

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University students at a protest rally in La Paz in September. Student activists demanding a fairer distribution of resources may not wish to hear that the growing numbers of professionals often resulted from the rapid and controversial expansion of private - and sometimes for-profit, universities - and that this accounts for part of the drop in inequality.

SPEECHES by politicians on inequality tend to be short on facts and long on ideological assertion. In developing and emerging economies, one charitable explanation for the poor quality of public discourse about income inequality is that data on income distribution are often unavailable or