Tony Blair

Luis Felipe Lopez-Calva

Inequality, exclusion and democracy

What is the impact of inequality in democracy? Join LIVE our special #KAPTalks with former UK’s Prime Minister Tony Blair marking 10th anniversary of the Kapuscinski Development Lectures. The lecture will be organised at the European Development Days 2019 in Brussels. Tune in on 18th June at 15:15 CET.

Tuesday 18.06.2019

More from the speaker

When: 18th June 2019 at 15:15 CET / 13:15 GMT (check time around the world).

Where: Tour & Taxis, Brussels, European Development Days 2019

You can join the lecture by:

The lecture will mark 10th anniversary of the Kapuscinski Development Lectures and will be hosted during the European Development Days 2019.
The keynote speech entitled „Transformative government: The path to development” will be delivered by Tony Blair, former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. A special address will be delivered by Luis Felipe Lopez-Calva, UN Assistant Secretary-General and Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean of UNDP. The speech will be followed by the panel discussion with participation of:
  • Santiago Levy, Brookings Institution, former vicepresident of Inter-American Development Bank
  • Jos Verbeek, World Bank, special representative to UN and WTO
  • Winnie Byanyima, Executive Director of Oxfam International
There is an agreement in the public discourse that inequality around the world is high and on the rise. In Latin America and the Caribbean, for example, the poorest 20 percent of households hold less than 5 percent of income, while the richest 20 percent hold over 55 percent. The situation is even more acute when we look at the concentration of wealth across households, with 26 people owning as much capital as the bottom half of the world’s population. Also, it is well established that the share of labour in total income has been shrinking compared to that of capital. Not surprisingly, few issues have captured the public attention in recent years like discussions around inequality. This increased interest begs us to examine what we have learned about inequality in recent decades, and push the debate further asking questions such as, how we can more accurately measure the dimensions of inequality that matter for development? How we can capture the polarization the is happening within societies, and eroding social cohesion and stability? Moreover, what are the process that generate and perpetuate inequality? And ultimately, what is the impact of inequality in democracy? The Kapuscinski Development Lecture will focus precisely on these questions, aiming to push the debate further building on we have learned about inequality and why it matters for democracy.

Organized in partnership with:

Tony Blair served as Prime Minister of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from 1997 to 2007. He was a staunch advocate of an interventionist foreign policy, in particular in Kosovo, Sierra Leone, Afghanistan and Iraq. He trebled the UK’s aid programme for Africa and introduced the first environmental programme in the UK to combat climate change. Since leaving office Tony Blair has spent most of his time working on three areas: supporting governments to deliver effectively for their people, working for peace in the Middle East, and countering extremism. He has established the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change to work on some of the most difficult challenges in the world today, including how the centre ground of politics renews itself with practical policy solutions.

Mr. Luis Felipe López-Calva is the UN Development Programme (UNDP) Assistant Administrator and Regional Director for Latin America and the Caribbean. He leads the organization´s work and teams in 40 countries and territories in the region helping bring governments, civil society organizations, and the private sector together to achieve the 2030 Agenda and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Mr. López-Calva has nearly 30 years of experience working in academia, advising top governments in the region.  He has held key leadership positions in multilateral organizations, including UNDP, and most recently with the World Bank where he served as Practice Manager of the Poverty and Equity Global Practice for Europe and Central Asia. He was also the co‑director and lead author of the World Development Report 2017 on “Governance and the Law” and was a lead economist in several World Bank divisions.  From 2007‑2010, he served as Chief Economist for UNDP´s Regional Bureau for Latin America and the Caribbean in New York, the same division he will now lead. His research focuses on labour markets, poverty and inequality, institutions and microeconomics of development.  He has presented his research at top institutions including:  Harvard University, Stanford University, University of California, Berkeley, University of California, San Diego; and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development Centre.  He holds a Master’s degree in Economics from Boston University, as well as a Master’s and a Doctorate in Economics from Cornell University.

On this topic