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This country note provides information on latest trends in income inequalities as well as key findings from the 2015 OECD report "In it Together: Why less inequality benefits all".
Alcoholic beverages, and their harmful use, have been familiar fixtures in human societies since the beginning of recorded history. Worldwide, alcohol is a leading cause of ill health and premature mortality. It accounts for 1 in 17 deaths, and for a significant proportion of disabilities, especially in men. In OECD countries, alcohol consumption is about twice the world average. Its social costs are estimated in excess of 1% of GDP in high- and middle-income countries. When it is not the result of addiction, alcohol use is an individual choice, driven by social norms, with strong cultural connotations. This is reflected in unique patterns of social disparity in drinking, showing the well-to-do in some cases more prone to hazardous use of alcohol, and a polarisation of problem-drinking at the two ends of the social spectrum. Certain patterns of drinking have social impacts, which provide a strong economic rationale for governments to influence the use of alcohol through policies aimed at curbing harms, including those occurring to people other than drinkers. Some policy approaches are more effective and efficient than others, depending on their ability to trigger changes in social norms, and on how well they can target the groups that are most at risk. This book provides a detailed examination of trends and social disparities in alcohol consumption. It offers a wide-ranging assessment of the health, social and economic impacts of key policy options for tackling alcohol-related harms in three OECD countries (Canada, the Czech Republic and Germany), extracting relevant policy messages for a broader set of countries.
The recent riots in Baltimore following the death of Freddy Gray bring a tragic focus, once again, on inequality. Maryland’s largest city, Baltimore is a perfect laboratory to study it, thanks in part to the superb comparative statistics the city keeps. OECD Insights Blog.
This book examines trends in ageing societies and urban development before assessing the impact of ageing populations on urban areas and strategies for policy and governance. It includes nine case studies covering Toyama, Japan; Yokohama, Japan; Lisbon, Portugal; Calgary, Canada; Cologne, Germany; Brno, Czech Republic; Manchester, United Kingdom; Philadelphia, United States and Helsinki, Finland.
Taxing Wages provides unique information on the taxes paid on wages in OECD countries. It covers personal income taxes and social security contributions paid by employees; social security contributions and payroll taxes paid by employers and cash benefits paid by in-work families. The purpose is to illustrate how these taxes and benefits are calculated in each member country and to examine how they impact on household incomes. The results also enable quantitative cross-country comparisons of labour cost levels and the overall tax and benefit position of single persons and families on different levels of earnings.
The publication shows this information for eight household types which vary by income level and household composition and the results reported include the marginal and average tax burdens for one and two earner families and the total labour costs of employers. These data are widely used in academic research and in the preparation and evaluation of social and economic policy making.
Taxing Wages 2015 includes a special feature entitled: ‘Modelling the tax burden on labour income in Brazil, China, India, Indonesia and South Africa.'
Structural reforms and income distribution
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Sweden’s level of income inequality is low by international standards but has steadily increased since the mid-1980s, faster than in any other OECD country. Reversing the increase in inequality requires a policy package built on three pillars.
The world has made good progress in improving global livelihoods. More than two billion people have emerged from extreme poverty over the last four decades. Other notable improvements include real increases in wages for unskilled workers, better life expectancy, greater gender equality and more widespread literacy. However, a number of daunting challenges threaten to undo this progress, particularly on the demographic and environmental fronts. While outlining the status of livelihoods today, this fascinating report enumerates the main emerging trends which will have a significant impact on livelihoods in the near future. It looks at a whole range of issues: economy, technology, demography, environment, security and governance. This book presents five possible future scenarios for livelihoods, whose positive or negative outcomes depend on how several emerging challenges are dealt with. It concludes with ideas for global, national and local action that hold significant promise for securing resilient livelihoods for all.
This report provides a detailed diagnosis of the youth labour market in Tunisia, including a focus on vocational education and training and entrepreneurship, and within the context of Tunisia's transition to a green economy. The report takes an international comparative perspective, offering policy options to help improve school-to-work transitions. It also provides an opportunity for other countries to learn from the innovative measures that Tunisia has taken to strengthen the skills of youth and their employment outcomes.
New approaches are needed for addressing social and economic challenges, including new models of public and private partnership which can fund, deliver and scale innovative solutions from the ground up.