Discussions about inequality have often been viewed through the lens of orthodox economic theory under the assumption that economic growth is a panacea for all ills, and the benefits will eventually trickle down to the poorest. UNRISD flagship report, Combating Poverty and Inequality: Structural Change, Social Policy and Politics
(2010), approached these issues from a development and social policy perspective. The report finds contemporary approaches to poverty reduction inadequate in many respects and focuses instead on important institutional, policy and political issues that tend to be ignored by current poverty reduction strategies.
This issue of the Global Social Policy
Forum features the responses of a number of scholars to the report’s findings and recommendations. The commentaries range over the role of households, private sector actors and multilateral organizations, including UNRISD. The result is a sympathetic but not uncritical review of the report’s contribution.
1. Introduction: Confronting global poverty and inequality, Stephen McBride
2. Combating poverty and inequality through social policies: Reflections on the UNRISD report, Sarah Cook and Ilcheong Yi
3. Why care for care? Who cares?, Elizabeth Jelin
4. Financing for long run development outcomes, Mukul Asher
5. Aspects of healthcare policy in Malaysia: Universalism, targeting, and privatization, Chan Chee Khoon
6. The global politics of poverty alleviation in the context of a multiple crises, Bob Deacon
7. The global politics of poverty reduction and social policy, Desmond McNeill
The journal is available online