In many corners of the world, there is a growing belief that leaders, companies, and institutions are not accountable to the people they are supposed to serve. There is also powerful new evidence that our leaders are failing to address one problem at the heart of these corrosive trends: extreme and growing economic inequality. While there are straightforward ways the world’s leaders—inside and outside of government—could act together to enhance transparency and accountability, two big developments emphasize the daunting scale of the task at hand.
First, a monumental new report released late last year from the World Inequality Lab—unprecedented in its scope, and featuring the most complete body of global wealth and income data ever analyzed—underscores that the wealth gap is driven primarily by public policy choices and that the growth of that gap is accelerating. In the United States, the share of personal wealth now held by the top