This article aims at verifying the findings by Richard G. Wilkinson and Kate E. Pickett (2009) which point to a strong correlation between the income gap and the escalation of social problems. Wilkinson and Pickett's thesis, described here as 'the Spirit Level concept', states that all kinds of social problems (ranging from drug abuse to lack of trust among people) are directly connected with the scale of social inequality in a given country. In this article the authors test this concept by analyzing the relation between the income gap in a particular country and four important problems: health condition, trust, social activity and cultural activity. They investigate this relation in European Union countries.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.