The spatial dimension of increasing socio-economic inequalities
Even if regions are able to create and maintain competitive advantage this does not assure increasing welfare of their people. Because of declining wage shares on the one hand and rapidly rising top incomes on the other, concentration of income and wealth at the very top now poses a considerable threat to future economic and social wellbeing in countries dominated by a strong financial sector.
We ask how (1) existing spatial configurations in form of industry mix, labor force characteristics and institutional environment shaper regional and urban differences in the levels and changes in income and wealth inequality as well as social mobility and (2) how global financialization coupled with wealth concentration influences local housing markets and so shapes segregation and inequality in individual cities.
While the link between global financialization and housing markets has been developed in the literature the step to segregation and inequality is insufficiently developed.
The transformation of housing from shelter into abstract, financial object depends not only on the size of the financial sector or the wealth share of the rich but also on national and locally specific institutions governing housing markets.
This research area will be developed in the context of the Austrian housing market with a particular emphasis on Vienna. The explicit focus on inter-scalar institutional frameworks and relations builds the conceptual bridge to research in the Department of Socioeconomics.