What can the 1930s German scholar Emil Lederer teach us about American inequality in the 21st century? That’s what William Milberg is going to find out.
Milberg, the dean of The New School for Social Research (NSSR), is one of six New School faculty members participating in an international comparative analysis on the topic of wealth and income disparity in Germany and the United States.
Sponsored by the German Research Foundation (DFG), the analysis comprises ten projects, each funded through a €20,000 grant to support research assistants and conference expenses.
Milberg will analyze research from Lederer and other German University in Exile scholars who studied labor markets and inequalities; economists Willi Semmler and Mark Setterfield will examine macroeconomic drivers of inequality; Teresa Ghilarducci, director of the Schwartz Center for Economic Policy Analysis, and urban policy specialist Rick McGahey, will investigate inequality in retirement systems; and Christian Proaño will focus on experimental economics, entrepreneurship, and inequality.
“These initial grants, focusing on wealth disparities, are just the starting point for an expected evolving research agenda between the German Research Foundation, German Universities and The New School in the future,” said Semmler, who is spearheading the project with Milberg. He is hopeful that the next stage will merge the projects into a larger transatlantic research cooperation.
This is not the first time The New School has worked with the DFG. In 2014, New School faculty members participated in DFG-sponsored conferences on wealth inequality and climate change.