Working Paper
How polarized is the global income distribution?

The interest in the level of global inequality has surged in recent years. This paper complements existing estimates of global inequality by providing the first estimates of the level of bipolarization of the global income distribution.

During 1975–2010, global bipolarization declined substantially according to ‘relative’ measures, while it increased according to ‘absolute’ measures. The results mirror trends in global inequality over the same period.