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p. 896. Distribution and mobilitylocked

  • Philip N. Jefferson


We all start out in a given position in society and with a level of income (or wealth). What determines where we will end up? Will we be better off than our parents were? For people living in poverty, the ease or difficulty of movement across the income distribution of society is the difference between hope and despair. If movement is easy, society is seen as being fluid—a dynamic place to live and raise a family. If movement is difficult, society is seen as being rigid. This movement is measured in quintiles of the income distribution. ‘Distribution and mobility’ considers the distribution of income, lifetime mobility, poverty transitions, intergenerational mobility, and poverty traps.

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