IDSS Presents: 'Income Inequality, Mobility, and the Accumulation of Capital'

Indonesian family


Stephen Turnovsky
Ford and Louisa Van Voorhis Professor of Economics
University of Washington


June 24, 2014


12:30–2:00 p.m. PT


RAND Corporation
1776 Main Street
Santa Monica, CA

About the Program

Empirical work on income mobility has traditionally focused on labor income changes. However, more recent empirical work has emphasized the importance of the intergenerational transmission of wealth. Therefore, greater effort is needed to develop models that incorporate both the possibility of earnings and wealth mobility.

Macroeconomists have shown how the basic Ramsey model, which treats all agents as identical, can in fact accommodate specific sources of heterogeneity, thereby enabling it to address questions pertaining to wealth and income inequality. Most applications are restricted to a single source of heterogeneity, the most common being the initial endowments of capital. But while a single source of heterogeneity can generate inequality, it cannot address issues pertaining to wealth and income mobility, for which this talk reviews the simultaneous introduction of more than one independent source of heterogeneity: elastic labor supply and heterogeneous wealth and ability.

About the Speaker

Stephen Turnovsky holds the Ford and Louisa Van Voorhis Professorship of Economics at the University of Washington. He received his Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1968. He is a Fellow of the Econometric Society, is a former editor of the Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, and remains on that journal’s advisory board. Currently he serves as an Associate Editor of Macroeconomic Dynamics, where he also serves as Special Issues Editor, the Journal of Public Economic Theory, and the Journal of Human Capital, as well as being on the editorial and advisory boards of a number of other journals. He is a past president of the Society of Economic Dynamics and Control and of the Society for Computational Economics.

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