Novo Nordisk Foundation supports project focussing on the impact of inequality

15 Jan 2020

The @EQUAL project recognizes that inequality both impacts – and is impacted by – a wide range of economic and political factors. It focuses on one side of this dynamic relationship, but in so doing, will also offer insights relevant to how inequality is formed and reproduced, and the role of institutions therein.

“@EQUAL reflects the core concern of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of leaving no one behind in absolute poverty. We wish to contribute in a decisive way by bringing forward new empirical evidence that will help us come to grips with the impact of inequality on growth, human development and governance and what to do to combat inequality,” says DERG coordinator, Professor Finn Tarp.

The project combines cross-national and within-country analysis, exploiting both existing datasets and collecting new data through surveys and lab-in-the-field experiments in two countries (Mozambique and Vietnam). It will employ diverse quantitative techniques in the analysis of both observational and experimental data.

“The purpose of this project is to explore inequality measures and understand behavioural response of vulnerable and poor people with respect to inequality. Inequality is a global challenge, but solutions target individuals. The learnings from this project will educate and enable funders and policy makers to better judge whether initiatives have the anticipated behaviour at the individual level to reach societal goals,” says Thomas Alslev Christensen, Head of Impact, Novo Nordisk Foundation.

The Novo Nordisk Foundation approved the project in December 2019. The budget is for joint work between DERG, the United Nations University World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER), the Central Institute of Economic Management (CIEM) in Vietnam, and the University Eduardo Mondlane (UEM) in Mozambique.

Further information

Christian Mostrup Scheel, Senior Press Officer, phone: +45 3067 4805,

The Novo Nordisk Foundation has awarded a grant of DKK 11.3 million for Professor Finn Tarp from the Development Economics Research Group (DERG) of the University of Copenhagen for a 4-year project entitled The Impact of Inequality on Growth, Human Development and Governance (@EQUAL).