Tackling Inequalities in Time of Austerity (TITA)

Public description of the goals at the beginning of the project

The consortium project “Tackling Inequalities in Time of Austerity” (TITA) provides a novel and comprehensive analysis of long-term trends in financial inequalities, inequalities in health and well-being and inequalities of opportunities over the life course, and their links to the moral and political climate in society. Thus, it analyses together multiple forms of inequality (such as income, wealth, consumption, education, family structures, health, mortality, trust and deprivation) and their interrelationships. It introduces a holistic framework for mapping the most crucial target groups for policy measures and ensures feasible policy recommendations for reducing inequalities in society for decades to come. It provides tools for policy-learning, both through within-country studies and cross-national comparisons. It exhausts unique longitudinal and time-series data and top-of-the-art statistical methods to fully explore mechanisms of inequality.

Public description of the results at the end of the project

The TITA project produced a wide array of data on changes in inequality and the mechanisms contributing to it. Some examples of the findings: The link between family backgrounds and educational choices has grown stronger. Parents’ educational attainment is associated particularly with children’s decision to attend upper secondary school. Childlessness is most common in Finland among persons with low educational attainment and has increased especially among women with low educational attainment. Having children is linked to personal experiences with relationships: Nearly a half of those without children have never lived with a partner. Unemployment and disability are tightly intertwined. Additional supports should be made available to unemployed individuals to improve their work capacity. Children who enter day care at an early age are most likely to achieve a high level of education. Their parents’ educational background does not explain all of the difference. High-quality early childhood education can promote equality of opportunities. While the employment effects of the basic income experiment were small, the participants reported improvements in their economic security, trust, wellbeing and mental health. TITA participated in the planning and evaluation of the experiment.

More information

  • Consortium's website
  • Consortium PI Mikko Niemelä, Professor, University of Turku, mikko.niemela(at)utu.fi

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