Linked inTwitter

Part consultancy, part thinktank, part social enterprise, Halcyon helps you prepare for and respond to personal, organisational and societal change.

Halcyon's 52:52:52 campaign on Twitter will help you address 52 issues with 52 responses over 52 weeks.

To be a catalyst is the ambition most appropriate for those who see the world as being in constant change, and who, without thinking that they control it, wish to influence its direction - Theodore Zeldin

A Mundane Comedy is Dominic Kelleher's new book, which will be published in early 2020. We will be publishing extracts on this site and across social media during the last quarter of 2019. Please feel free to contact us with any questions about the book.

What's Changing? - Equality



Please see below selected recent equality-related change.


See also:


September 2019

  • While in recent decades huge strides have been made in reducing illiteracy in low-income countries, 30 percent of adults from these regions will still be illiterate by 2030, according to UNESCO


July 2019

  • Inequality is not a new phenomenon, but in recent years it has re-emerged as a social and political flash point in advanced economies and beyond, stoking public dissatisfaction. Perspectives about inequality - what it is, how it is evolving, and how to address it - are polarised. and at times, even the data used to support arguments are contested, warned McKinsey in Inequality: A persisting challenge and its implications.
  • High levels of social inequality, as reflected in differences in access to high-quality health care and education, for example, are a greater drag on a country's well-being than is high income inequality, according to the Boston Consulting Group's report, Measure Well-Being to Improve It, However, social inequality generally gets much less attention than income inequality in debate and discussion among policymakers.
  • Income inequality declined globally between 1988 and 2015, but only if one counts India and China. With those two countries removed from the dataset, income inequality has worsened in the remaining 143 countries measured in the study.


March 2019


February 2019


January 2019


December 2018


November 2018


October 2018


September 2018


July-August 2018

  • A monthly poll of public attitudes in 28 countries found that 56% of respondents felt their countries were on the wrong track, with unemployment and poverty/inequality topping the list of complaints. 
  • Long summer school breaks make inequality worse, warned Quartz. With limited access to books, museums, and educational camps, children from low-income families worldwide fall behind between academic years.
  • One way to measure inequality is to look at how easy it is for those at the bottom of the social ladder to climb their way up - to, as people would say in the US, “pull themselves up by their bootstraps.” A new report from the OECD does just that, identifying the number of generations it would take those born into low-income families to approach the average income in their society. 
  • Stock buybacks are ruining economies, warned Quartz, claiming that the transfer of trillions of dollars to shareholders increases inequality and reduces corporate investment.
  • The Chartbook of Economic Equality presents the empirical evidence about long-run changes in economic inequality. The chartbook covers 25 countries – often over the course of more than one hundred years. For each country a chart shows how different dimensions of economic inequality have changed over time. A detailed description of the data sources is given for each country.


July 2018

  • The new World Inequality Report noted that inequality is rising in nearly every part of the globe. Much of this is driven by greater privately-owned capital and the concentration of that ownership.
  • The United Nations released a report on international development, entitled Development for Everyone. It focuses on equality, distinguishing between absolute inequality and relative inequality. It points out that in terms of the Gini coefficient, a statistical measure used to gauge a country’s income inequality, one kind of inequality is rising while the other is falling. Relative global inequality has declined steadily over the past few decades, sespite an increasing trend towards inequality within countries. By contrast, absolute inequality, measured by the absolute Gini coefficient, has increased dramatically, noted HumanProgress.
  • Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos became the richest person in modern history, with a reported net worth topping $150 billion.


June 2018


May 2018

  • One-fifth of the world’s population are unbanked, noted Quartz. Historically, it hasn’t been economically viable to provide financial services for these individuals, as they didn’t meet the minimum profitable threshold for most financial institutions. However, the introduction of new technologies has the potential to lower the cost of overcoming the hurdles that stop people entering the banking world. Emerging markets are already embracing innovative technology and developing policy to increase financial inclusion, which represents an estimated US$200 billion opportunity.
  • French economist Thomas Piketty estimates that offshore assets held by wealthy Russians exceed one year of Russia GDP. It’s a measure of the extent to which Russia’s natural wealth no longer lives in Russia.
  • Gender inequalities in the labour market start early. Even as babysitters, males are more likely to get a raise than females. And if there was an emotional connection between the female and the child, they were least likely to receive raises.


April 2018

  • A report from the World Bank found that South Africa is the world’s most unequal country. The top 1 percent of South Africans own 70.9 percent of the nation's wealth. The bottom 60 percent of South Africans collectively control just 7 percent.


January 2018


Pre 2018

  • The picture for the economic gap between men and women is bleak and won’t be closed for another 217 years, according to the latest World Economic Forum analysis.
  • A common yardstick for measuring societal equality is the Gini coefficient, which runs from 0 (everyone has the same income) to 1 (one person has all the income).  Most countries range between 0.25 and 0.6.  The Economist shows that the Gini coefficient has gone up a lot in some rich countries since the 1980s.  And as poor countries are on average growing faster than rich ones, inequality in the world as a whole is falling.

  • However, inequality is a complex issue, involving not just straightforward comparisons of individuals, but also comparisons over time.  Branko Milanovic, lead economist at the World Bank's research division, approaches the issue in a new and innovative way, focusing on inequality in income and wealth in different time periods and contexts: from inequality in Roman times (and how it compared with inequality today), to depictions of wealth inequality in literature (Pride and Prejudice and Anna Karenina), to inequality across generations of a single family (the three generations of Obamas illustrating this theme). As for global inequality today, Milanovic examined, in TheHavesAndHaveNots.mp3 at the LSE in 2011 the main causes (differences in average incomes between countries), the role China and India might play, and, perhaps most importantly, whether global inequality matters at all, and if does, what can we do to reduce it.