The World We Want: Equality and Equity?

02/01/2013 at 11:51 am Leave a comment

The discussions about a better Ireland in a fairer world increasingly centre on the degree of inequality in our societies.

Some years ago, Ireland’s Minister for Justice, Equality (!) and Law Reform famously claimed that inequality is inevitable, and indeed desirable. More recently, however, even the traditionally ‘laissez-faire’ World Bank found that too much inequality is not a good thing.

The World Bank stresses the difference between ‘equity’ (fairness in the sense of equality of opportunity and the avoidance of absolute deprivation) and ‘equality’ (the distribution of goods and income levels). However, the Bank also claimed that inequality is inherently a political issue that the bank, as an a-political organisation, should not be talking about.’

Others would argue that it is impossible to talk about sustainable development without becoming ‘political’. This Dóchas blog post argues that poverty by itself is political, and this article makes the case that a fairer Ireland requires a fairer world, too.


The UN’s research arm points to the fact that over the past 20 years, income inequality has worsened across the globe. In the book ‘The Spirit Level’, Pickett and Wilkinson famously showed that the problems facing poor communities are worse in societies with bigger income inequalities. In other words, greater equality makes societies stronger.

Others also found that the issue of Inequality should be at the heart of our discussions about the future global agreement on how to develop our societies:

And what do you think?

Let us know here:



Entry filed under: MDGs. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

Irish EU Presidency – key websites Ireland’s EU Presidency is an opportunity to shape the thinking on how to end world poverty

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Trackback this post  |  Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 217 other followers


Dóchas on Twitter

The World's Best News - images

One of the most important graphs. Ever.
Today is World Food Day. A day to celebrate that the days of truly enormous famines are over:
Meet "Chocolate Mamas", producers of chocolate in #Tanzania, creating Tanzanian jobs. While #cocoa is grown in West Africa and Asia, most #chocolate (the finished product) is made in Europe or the USA. Meet Jaki Kweka, who is trying to change that.
By creating protected areas and national parks and by limiting the spread of soy bean cultivation, Brazil has managed to drastically reduce the amount of rain forest being cleared.
Costa Rica, #Afghanistan, China, #India and Albania are all embracing renewable energy sources.
Social change needs empowered citizens, and empowered citizens need occasional encouragement. Great to hear that we're not the only ones who believe in the power of positive news!
50,000 rice farmers in #IvoryCoast are now working with better seeds, improving food security in the West African country. As a result, harvests have increased. Source: World Bank, photo: Jbdodane / CC BY
Sub-Saharan Africa’s first light rail system starts operations. As Ethiopians celebrate their New Year, they also prepare to mark the beginning of operations of a tram system in the #Ethiopian capital #AddisAbaba. Read more:
Going Mobile in #Malawi”. A mobile phone information service established last year to provide timely information to rural poor farmers in a southern African country, has been used nearly half a million times since its launch. Established in Malawi by Gorta-Self Help Africa last year, the ‘321’ voice-activated service provides subscribers to the country’s largest mobile phone network with farm information and advice that they can access at the push of a button. And it’s all free.
10,000 copies of "The World's Best News" were distributed all over #ireland today! See how The Irish Times described our newspaper, and click the link to read all the articles online!

Visitors Map


Dóchas Photos

%d bloggers like this: