By recent estimates, the developing world's share of people in extreme deprivation has been reduced by half in the past two decades. In the meantime, the population just above the absolute poverty line has grown by about 1.4 billion and will soon represent the majority of the developing world's population. This article analyses the consequences of these dramatic transformations for public attitudes about redistribution. Contrary to the predictions of standard economic models, it finds that countries with faster rates of poverty reduction tend to report growing support for redistribution. In addition, there are signs that changing poverty levels and public redistribution preferences were accompanied by changes in public spending on basic social services.

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