Is Inequality Inevitable? - Scientific American

11 bookmarks. First posted by fbaymzter 13 days ago.

Wealth inequality is escalating in many countries at an alarming rate, with the U.S. arguably having the highest inequality in the developed world.

A remarkably simple model of wealth distribution developed by physicists and mathematicians can reproduce inequality in a range of countries with unprecedented accuracy.

Surprisingly, several mathematical models of free-market economies display features of complex macroscopic physical systems such as ferromagnets, including phase transitions, symmetry breaking and duality.

economics
finance
wealth
politics
science
research
A remarkably simple model of wealth distribution developed by physicists and mathematicians can reproduce inequality in a range of countries with unprecedented accuracy.

Surprisingly, several mathematical models of free-market economies display features of complex macroscopic physical systems such as ferromagnets, including phase transitions, symmetry breaking and duality.

7 days ago by Chirael

Indeed, the seeming stability of an economic system arising from this balance of supply and demand among individual actors is regarded as a pinnacle of Enlightenment thinking—to the extent that many people have come to conflate the free market with the notion of freedom itself. We believe that this purely analytical approach, which resembles an x-ray in that it is used not so much to represent the messiness of the real world as to strip it away and reveal the underlying skeleton, provides deep insight into the forces acting to increase poverty and inequality today. In separate papers in 2015 my colleagues and I at Tufts University and Christophe Chorro of Université Panthéon-Sorbonne provided mathematical proofs of the outcome that Chakraborti's simulations had uncovered—that the yard sale model moves wealth inexorably from one side to the other. Credit: Jen Christiansen; Source: Bruce M. Boghosian; European Central Bank ( country data ) We find it noteworthy that the best-fitting model for empirical wealth distribution discovered so far is one that would be completely unstable without redistribution rather than one based on a supposed equilibrium of market forces. Given how complicated real economies are, we find it gratifying that a simple analytical approach developed by physicists and mathematicians describes the actual wealth distributions of multiple nations with unprecedented precision and accuracy.

10 days ago
by sechilds