April 1, 2021
Written by WID.world

The book “Political cleavages and social inequalities” is out in French

Summary of “Political cleavages and social inequalities”



Clivages politiques inégalités sociales

Who votes for whom and why? Why has growing inequality in many parts of the world not led to renewed class-based conflicts, and seems instead to have come with the emergence of new divides over identity and integration? News analysts, scholars, and citizens interested in exploring those questions inevitably lack relevant data, in particular the kinds of data that establish historical and international context. Political Cleavages and Social Inequalities provides the missing empirical background, collecting and examining a treasure trove of information on the dynamics of polarization in modern democracies.

The chapters draw on a unique set of surveys conducted between 1948 and 2020 in fifty countries on five continents, analyzing the links between voters’ political preferences and socioeconomic characteristics, such as income, education, wealth, occupation, religion, ethnicity, age, and gender. This analysis sheds new light on how political movements succeed in coalescing multiple interests and identities in contemporary democracies. It also helps us understand the conditions under which conflicts over inequality become politically salient, as well as the similarities and constraints of voters supporting ethnonationalist politicians like Narendra Modi, Jair Bolsonaro, Marine Le Pen, and Donald Trump.



The World Political Cleavages and Inequality Database (WPID)


World Political Cleavages and Inequality Database


The World Political Cleavages and Inequality Database (WPID) is the result of a collaborative research program involving about twenty researchers all around the world. The central aim is to provide open and convenient access to the most extensive available dataset on the structure of political cleavages and social inequalities in electoral democracies, located on the five continents, from the mid-20th century to the present.

➡ All the data published in the book are available on the World Political Cleavages and Inequality Database.Visit the website : wpid.world


About the coordinators

  • Amory Gethin is a research fellow at the World Inequality Lab (Paris School of Economics, PSE)
  • Clara Martínez-Toledano is a professor at the Imperial College London wealth coordinator et at the World Inequality Lab
  • Thomas Piketty is a professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) and at the Paris School of Economics, and Co-Director of the World Inequality Lab.


Book details


Media inquiries

  • Séverine Roscot, Seuil: Severine.Roscot@seuil.com
  • Olivia Ronsain, World Inequality Lab: olivia.ronsain@wid.world; +33 7 63 91 81 68