Challenges on the Way to Implement Goals of Sustainable Development - Reducing Inequalities
Purpose: The aim of this paper is to assess the differentiation of the level of socio-economic and gender inequality in European Union countries. The empirical research was based on a database of indicators of sustainable development, from which indicators describing gender inequalities were selected. Design/Methodology/Approach: The study used a synthetic measure based on the method of zero-based unitarisation, which allowed for the classification of European Union countries according to the level of studied inequalities. Findings: The results show that the countries that joined the Union after 2004, with the exception of Greece and Italy, had the highest level of inequality (ranking 20th or higher). In contrast, the lowest level was characteristic of Finland and Belgium, the highly developed countries of Northern and Western Europe. Practical Implications: The research findings presented are highly relevant to developing policies to eliminate socio-economic and gender inequalities. Properly functioning social protection systems can have a stabilising effect on the economy and promote socio-economic equality. Originality/Value: The article contributes to the most recent European and global academic discussions concerning the need to eliminate inequalities, which are among the most serious social problems in the world.