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The great divide: Investigating income inequality

By Gwen Girsdansky

IRE Board President David Cay Johnston and Paul Overberg from USA Today spoke about how to investigate income inequality on Friday at the IRE Conference.

When researching trends, the speakers recommended looking at the Bureau of Labor Statistics, bank deposits (which are available for every bank branch in the United States), the Luxembourg Wealth Study and the work of Emmanuel Saez, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley.

Johnston and Overberg recommended different sources to talk with to find trends or investigating trends. This includes educational leaders, a district superintendent or community college president. Colleges, either local or regional, will have research on local economics. There is often a planning staff for the community that can offer diverse perspectives. Nonprofits, such as the food banks, that can talk about the shifting demographics needing assistance, are another source of information.

Gwen Girsdansky is a journalism student at the University of Missouri

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