Emerging markets and developing economies grew consistently in the two decades before the COVID-19 pandemic hit, allowing for much-needed gains in poverty reduction and life expectancy. The crisis now puts much of that progress at risk while further widening the gap between rich and poor.
Despite the pre-pandemic gains in poverty reduction and lifespans, many of these countries have struggled to reduce income inequality. At the same time, they saw persistently high shares of inactive youth (i.e., those not in employment, education, or training), wide inequality in education, and large gaps remaining in economic opportunities for women. COVID-19 is expected to make inequality even worse than past crises since measures to contain the pandemic have had disproportionate effects on vulnerable workers and women.
As part of our latest World Economic Outlook we explore two facts about the current pandemic to estimate its effect on inequality: a person’s ability to work from home and the drop in GDP expected for most countries in the world.
The impact of where you work
First, the ability to work from home has been key during the pandemic. A […]
The pandemic has altered people’s lives in both enormous and small ways. Our editors have picked the top recent blogs that dig into the details of what COVID-19 means for people: the impact on women and the young, what it means for the food supply, and how it can increase already growing inequality, to name a few. […]
The COVID-19 pandemic is devastating labor markets across the world. Tens of millions of workers lost their jobs, millions more out of the labor force altogether, and many occupations face an uncertain future. […]
If you are born a girl, you may have to fight for your rights. And without rights, you will not only face discrimination, but also likely have a hard time getting the healthcare and education you will need to be a productive worker and thus have a hard time getting a good paying job. Without productive women in good jobs, the loss of potential output is large. […]
November 28, 2018
Despite some progress, the gaps in labor force participation between men and women remain large. […]
November 16, 2018
The way we work is changing at an unprecedented rate. Digitalization, artificial intelligence, and machine learning are eliminating many jobs involving low and middle-skill routine tasks through automation. […]