Lars Osberg

Expertise: Professor of Economics at Dalhousie University, Author of "The Age of Increasing Inequality"

Lars Osberg is currently McCulloch Professor of Economics at Dalhousie University, but he began life in Ottawa, Ontario. As an undergraduate, he attended Queen’s University, Kingston and the London School of Economics and Political Science. After two years working for the Tanzania Sisal Corporation as a CUSO volunteer, he went to Yale University for his Ph.D. He has had visiting positions at Cambridge, New York University and the Universities of Sydney, New South Wales and Essex. Most recently, during 2009-2010, he was Senior Visiting Research Fellow at Research on Poverty Alleviation (REPOA), Dar es Salaam, Tanzania and Visiting Scholar at the Indira Ghandi Institute for Development Research. Mumbai, India.

His first book was Economic Inequality in Canada, and the most recent is The Economic Implications of Social Cohesion. In between there have been eight others and four editions of an introductory economics textbook. He is also the author of numerous refereed articles in professional journals, book chapters, reviews, reports and miscellaneous publications. His current research emphasizes the measurement and determinants of poverty and economic insecurity, the implications of increasing inequality and the measurement of economic well-being. Among other professional responsibilities, he was President of the Canadian Economics Association in 1999-2000.

Recent Work: 

Book: The Age of Increasing Inequality: The Astonishing Rise of Canada's 1%

Posts & Activities by Lars Osberg

  • Why a Carbon Fee and Dividend now makes more sense than ever for Canada

    Now that Manitoba has joined Ontario and Saskatchewan in opposition to a carbon tax, what are the realistic political options for the federal government?  Economists overwhelmingly support carbon pricing as the most economically efficient way to reduce greenhouse gas emission and combat climate change. But should the federal government now just accept that Canadian conservatives have successfully framed it as a “job-killing tax” whose implementation will “hurt the economy”? Have Doug Ford, Andrew Scheer and other Conservatives been successful in nurturing the suspicion that carbon pricing is just another tax grab by government that will make “ordinary Canadians” worse off? Is the idea now politically dead?

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  • Happy 80th Birthday Ed Broadbent!

    Sign Ed's Birthday Card

    We will hand deliver Ed's messages to him - help us make his 80th special.

    Ed has been working for a more inclusive, fair and just Canada for more than 50 years. On his 80th Birthday, let’s celebrate his life & accomplishments! 


  • Can more education solve Canada’s income inequality problem?


    Since the early 1980s, middle class incomes in Canada and the United States have stagnated while the incomes of the top 1% have, with occasional short interruptions, grown dramatically. As a result, the top 1% income share in the U.S. increased from 10.8% of total income in 1982 to 22.5% in 2012. Tax data in Canada show a smaller increase, but it is hard to be completely sure since the top 1% in Canada have been able to shelter some of their income increase from view (in Canadian Controlled Private Corporations). 


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