Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: April 21, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963855 | Print ISBN: 9781412941860 | Online ISBN: 9781412963855| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Elizabeth R. Purdy Ph.D.
Despite the economic upheaval that Germany has experienced since reunification in 1990, the country ranks as the 24th richest nation in the world, with a per capita income of $30,100. The German economy is the largest in Europe, but growth has continued to slow in recent years. No official poverty rates are reported, but unemployment is high (11.7 percent). Income inequality also exists, and Germany ranks 28.3 percent on the Gini index of inequality. The poorest 10 percent of the population claims only 3.6 percent of resources as compared to 25.1 percent for the richest 10 percent. Direction of social funding to residents of the East German area has caused a great deal of dissatisfaction among some West Germans, and the rapidly aging population has added additional strain to the budget. However, the overall standard of living remains high, and the United Nations Development Programme's (UNDP) Human Development Report ranks ...