26 March 2021

Misperception of inequality

New CEBI research about peoples’ perceptions on social positions in society and fairness views on inequalityis now explained in interview published at Marketplace.com

Stefanie Stantcheva from Harvard University has collaborated with Kristoffer Balle Hvidberg and Claus Kreiner. In her interview with Marketplace.com she explains how they found that “People who are actually ranked toward the bottom of the income distribution tend to think they’re ranked higher than they truly are,” Stantcheva told “Marketplace Morning Report” host David Brancaccio in an interview. “And those who are ranked toward the top believe they’re ranked lower than they actually are.”

Stefanie explains: "So we have this new project where we match people to their tax returns, so that we can see exactly where they rank relative to others, including other types of groups, like people with the same education, or people who work in the same firm, or people in the same sector, in the same city, even their neighbors. And we asked them to rank themselves among these various groups. And on balance, people are quite accurate. But this pattern that you mentioned, namely that we tend to think we’re more middle-class than we actually are, is still there."

Read the full interview at marketplace.com