Podcast

Backstage: Policy principles for a new social contract

This episode of The Sound of Economics features Bruegel senior fellow Zsolt Darvas in conversation with Maurizio Bussolo and Bernadette Ségol about income inequality in Europe and Central Asia, and the policy principles underpinning a possible new social contract.

By: Date: January 24, 2019 Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance

Although income distribution in Europe and Central Asia reaches a fairly egalitarian standard relative to the rest of the world, the current levels of inequality among individuals and households are a major cause of dissatisfaction. In the time of globalisation and rapid technological change, when income inequalities heavily affect people’s security and well-being, the demand for a new social contract (and hence welfare state) is apparent. But what would a renewed social contract look like?

In this episode of Bruegel Backstage, senior fellow Zsolt Darvas talks to Maurizio Bussolo, the lead economist for Europe and Central Asia at the World Bank, and Bernadette Ségol, the former secretary general of the European Trade Union Confederation.

The document that brings them together is the recently published World Bank report, “Towards a New Social Contract: Taking on Distributional Tensions in Europe and Central Asia”, co-written by Maurizio Bussolo. It highlights the shortcomings of the current systems both for taxes and transfers and for labour-market regulation. The report sketches out the policy principles to guide a potential new social contract, principles that assume universal social assistance and insurance, labour protection, and more progressive taxation. If implemented, the report suggests, these measures would improve mobility and flexibility, helping to overcome the inequality traps and provide a broader, more just access to opportunities.

For further reading, you may consider Zsolt Darvas’ blog post on the EU income inequality decline, as well as a publication on the hardships of achieving the EU’s poverty target by the same author.

This podcast was recorded following a Bruegel event, “Towards a new social contract”on January 24th 2019.

Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

Did the Eurogroup save the day?

After its longest meeting ever, the Eurogroup reached an agreement yesterday evening. What does the agreement say? What does it mean in terms of the emergency reaction to the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic? What does it mean, more broadly, for the future of Europe? This week, Giuseppe Porcaro is joined by Maria Demertzis, André Sapir and Guntram Wolff to discuss whether the Eurogroup can save the day.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: April 10, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Blog Post

COVID-19: The self-employed are hardest hit and least supported

Self-employed workers are hardest-hit by COVID-19 lockdowns. Yet they often receive less government support than salaried employees. Is the disparity justified?

By: Julia Anderson Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: April 8, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

Mythbusters: debunking economic myths

Economics seems to be full of myths that are hard to debunk. Will robots take our jobs? Are trade deficits bad? Is China such a big economy simply because of the size of its population? This week, Nicholas Barrett, Maria Demertzis, Marta Domínguez-Jímenez and Niclas Poitiers put on the detective cap and become Bruegel's own economic mythbusters.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: April 3, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

The macroeconomic policy response to the COVID-19 crisis

From the European Stability Mechanism (ESM) to "coronabonds", the EU seems to be struggling to find an appropriate mechanism to tackle the economic crisis created by the COVID-19 pandemic. What is really the best option? And how do we ensure that, once the pandemic is over, we return to sustainable debt levels and competitive economies? This week, Giuseppe Porcaro is joined by Lucrezia Reichlin, professor of Economics at the London Business School, Grégory Claeys and Guntram Wolff to discuss the macroeconomic policy response to the COVID-19 crisis.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: March 31, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Blog Post

How COVID-19 is laying bare inequality

COVID-19 is laying bare socio-economic inequalities and could exacerbate them in the near future. The virus is a risk factor particularly for those at the lower end of the income distribution, who are vulnerable to the interaction of the shock with income, socio-economic and urban inequalities.

By: Enrico Bergamini Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: March 31, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

Banks and loan losses in the pandemic turmoil

The current pandemic is shaking the financial system. How can banks react ? Is a consolidation of the financial system in Europe needed in order to respond to this crisis ? Will our economies suffer from this pandemic as much as they did in 2008 ? This week, Giuseppe Porcaro is joined live by Guntram Wolff and Nicolas Véron to discuss banks and loan losses in the pandemic turmoil.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: Finance & Financial Regulation Date: March 25, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

How can the EU prevent our economies from shutting down?

From flights cancelled and restaurants closed to companies either slowing or stopping their production, COVID-19 is shutting our economies down. How can the EU reboot them? What should be our fiscal and monetary response to the pandemic? Will our economic system ever be the same once everything is over? This week, Guntram Wolff is joined by Jean Pisani-Ferry and Maria Demertzis to discuss the EU's response to the coronavirus.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: European Macroeconomics & Governance Date: March 18, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Opinion

What if the rest of Europe follows Italy's coronavirus fate?

The silence from Brussels could be as damaging as the silence on Italian streets

By: Simone Tagliapietra Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: March 11, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

Where are the women in economics?

The field of economics, like many others, seems to be biased towards men. How are women disadvantaged? Makfire Alija and Katja Knezevic join Nicholas Barrett and Niclas Poitiers to discuss the systematic hurdles.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: March 9, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

The European Green Deal rules

When it comes to global carbon emission is a tax the best form of defence? To make the European Green Deal work, the EU is considering a levy on carbon-intensive goods manufactured beyond its borders. But will a carbon border tax spawn a massive bureaucracy and lead to accusations of protectionism? To find out, Nicholas Barrett talked to Georg Zachmann and Ben McWilliams from Bruegel and Gabriel Felbermayr, President of the Kiel Institute for the World Economy.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: March 9, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Podcast

Podcast

Coronavirus: the economic prognosis

The coronavirus is going to hit the global economy hard, but how hard? What can policymakers plan for the months ahead? Nicholas Barrett asks Guntram Wolff and Maria Demertzis about economic symptoms and treatments.

By: The Sound of Economics Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: March 9, 2020
Read article More on this topic More by this author
 

Opinion

Downsides to Hong Kong’s untargeted cash handout

The stimulus is regressive in nature, as the bulk of expenditure is a one-off cash disbursement per adult

By: Alicia García-Herrero Topic: Global Economics & Governance Date: March 4, 2020
Load more posts