Should we focus on dividing the cake or baking a bigger cake?

CAKE THEORY emerged in 2010 as problems with increasing wealth and income gaps became more apparent. If economic development is seen as analogous to baking a cake, one side of […]
Published on May 10, 2024

CAKE THEORY emerged in 2010 as problems with increasing wealth and income gaps became more apparent. If economic development is seen as analogous to baking a cake, one side of the debate suggests that prior to baking the cake, society should focus on “dividing the cake more fairly” BEFORE it is made. The other side says that the focus should be on “baking a bigger cake”, and only after it is made, should its distribution be considered. One side believes that when we focus on dividing the cake more evenly in a wealthy society like Canada, fewer people will be left behind. Those who believe we should focus on making a bigger cake, believe that a bigger cake will provide higher incomes and wealth “on average” even though the wealth and income gaps remain or even grow.

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