This chapter sets out the central challenge facing rich countries, on which this volume is focused: how to restore inclusive economic growth and prosperity. It describes how rising inequality in the rich countries over recent decades is now widely seen as undermining growth and even more so the living standards and prospects of ordinary working families. It reviews key themes in the debate about why inequality has been rising, and why this should be such a central concern. The chapter then outlines the approach taken in this book, which is to examine in depth the experiences of ten rich countries, posing the same set of questions about what has happened to inequality and ordinary living standards over recent decades, and why. The aim is to learn from these varying experiences, analysed through a common lens, about how inclusive growth can best be supported.
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