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Inequality in the Age of Globalization | Branko Milanović

The University of Antwerp welcomed Prof. Branko Milanović on 19 -21 September 2017 to discuss global income inequality. He was invited by the Faculty of Applied Economics, the Centre for Social Policy Herman Deleeck (CSP), the Institute of Development Policy (IDP) and the University Centre Saint-Ignatius Antwerp (UCSIA). He addressed the audience at the inauguration of the academic year at the IDP, participated at a doctoral seminar and read a lecture followed by a panel debate in the framework of the Teaching Chair PW Segers.

The visit of prof. Milanović was proposed by prof. Sunčica Vujić of the Faculty of Applied Economics and supported by an organizing committee with Prof. Bea Cantillon, Prof. Tom De Herdt, Prof. Guido Erreygers, em. Prof. Stefaan Marysse and UCSIA as its members.

Branko Milanović is professor at the City University of New York. He obtained a PhD in economics at the University of Belgrade (1987) with a dissertation on income inequality in the then Republic of Yugoslavia. He has been associated among others with the World Bank, Johns Hopkins University and the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington. His pioneering scholarly work on income inequality, both within countries and globally, his analysis of income inequality in pre-industrial societies and his books The Haves and the Have-Nots. A Brief and Idiosyncratic History of Global Inequality (2011, Basic Books) and Global Inequality. A New Approach for the Age of Globalization (2016, Harvard University Press) have made him one of the prominent economists of this era who has put the study of global inequality back on the political agenda.

Doctoral seminar

The guest speaker and 20 doctoral students discussed the ongoing doctoral work of:

  • Lorena Zardo Trindade, who elaborates statistical tools which enable a pan-European perspective on low-income dynamics in the EU (CSP, University of Antwerp );
  • Mery Ferrando Gutierrez, who examines the evolution of income poverty under unequal growth from the perspective of the debate between absolutists and relativists (Center for operations research and econometrics, UCL);
  • Rosana Martinelli, who analyses the evolving strategies and institutions for poverty reduction in Latin-America (IDP, University of Antwerp).


More than 350 participants registered for the lecture and ensuing panel debate with Prof. Koen Decancq (University of Antwerp & London School of Economics), Mr. Luc Cortebeeck (Chairperson, International Labour Organization) and Mr. Bogdan Vanden Berghe, (General Director, 11.11.11).

Prof. Luc Braeckmans, director of academic affairs at UCSIA, situated the Teaching Chair P.W. Segers against UCSIA’s mandate to provide a platform for interdisciplinary debate of issues of social justice. The Rector Magnificus of the University of Antwerp, Prof. Herman Van Goethem, encouraged those present to discern the local, national, European and global challenges of income inequality, diversity and social inclusion; considering that Antwerp being a port city, a centre of wealth creation and a meeting ground of nationalities and cultures, offers the city a privileged position for observation, analysis and debate of these issues, also pro-actively anticipating future developments. Prof. Branko Milanović synthesised the major conclusions and insights of his recent book.

Read the summary of the proceedings (pdf-document).