June 19, 2023
Written by WID.world

Public Attitudes Toward Redistributive Policies for Poverty Reduction and Climate Change

Recent surveys in high and middle-income countries reveal substantial support for globally redistributive policies for poverty reduction and climate change mitigation, especially for a global tax on the wealthiest aimed at financing low-income countries. And yet, these policies still receive limited attention in the public debate. This paper asks why.

The paper first presents findings from surveys in the United States and Europe that document support for global policies such as wealth taxes, and foreign aid. It takes a closer look at a specific policy aimed at addressing both climate change and poverty, referred to as the “Global Climate Scheme’ (GCS). This policy implements a cap on carbon emissions to limit global warming below 2°C. The emission rights are auctioned each year to polluting firms and fund a global basic income, alleviating extreme poverty. The paper ends with a discussion on potential explanations behind the policy implementation gap.


  • Adrien Fabre, CNRS, CIRED, France
  • Thomas Douenne, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • Linus Mattauch, Technical University of Berlin, Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (Germany)


  • press@wid.world