Equality of Opportunity in Four Measures of Well-Being

Daniel Gerszon Mahler, Xavier Ramos

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearch

2 Citations (Scopus)


© 2019 International Association for Research in Income and Wealth A growing literature has tried to measure the extent to which individuals have equal opportunities to acquire income. At the same time, policymakers have doubled down on efforts to go beyond income when designing policies to enhance well-being. We attempt to bridge these two areas by measuring the extent to which individuals have equal opportunities to achieve a high level of well-being. We use the German Socio-Economic Panel to measure well-being in four different ways, including incomes. This makes it possible to determine if the way in which well-being is measured matters for identifying who the opportunity-deprived are and for tracking inequality of opportunity over time. We find that, regardless of how well-being is measured, the same people are opportunity-deprived and equality of opportunity has improved over the past 10 years. This suggests that going beyond income has little relevance if the objective is to provide equal opportunities.
Original languageEnglish
JournalReview of Income and Wealth
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019


  • effort
  • equality of opportunity
  • measurement
  • responsibility
  • well-being


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