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Building a fair and well-functioning society is a political priority for the European Union.

The importance of fairness in the political agenda is reflected by the adoption of the European Pillar of Social Rights in 2017 and also by the Commission 2019-2024 priority: An economy that works for people.

To provide a wider evidence base that can enhance EU policy aiming to achieve this goal, the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC) has embarked on a multi-year cross-national research project to study different aspects of fairness.

The research topics addressed include: the distribution of income across and within EU Member States as well as the fairness related impact of tax and social benefits systems; the dynamics of social mobility across and within generations; the drivers of inequalities and fairness perceptions; and the determinants of civic and social behaviors.

Check below for more resources: latest workshops, latest policy briefs, other publications, and data on fairness. 

Latest Workshops of the Community of Practice on Fairness

Fairness Community of Practice

The Community aims to foster an informed dialogue and knowledge sharing on the multidimensional aspects of fairness thereby bridging the gap between academics and policy makers. The Fairness CoP regularly organises events on fairness relevant topics.

The seminar will present some evidence based on the Special Eurobarometer survey data concerning the spread of relative income (mis)perceptions in the EU.

Latest policy briefs on Fairness

The JRC regularly publishes policy briefs on various topics related to fairness.


Fairness Perceptions eurobarometer

The survey shows that, in 2022, fewer Europeans think that life is fair compared to 2017. While people are not more concerned about income inequality than 5 years ago, there is wide support for additional spending on social policies. The fieldwork was carried out in May and June 2022. 26,395 respondents across the EU-27 participated.

To find out more about the JRC's work on similar topics, explore the related JRC portfolios: