This volume of essays builds upon renewed interest in the long-run global development of wealth and inequality stimulated by the publication of Thomas Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century. It brings together an international team of leading economic historians and economists to provide an overview of global developments in the theory and reality of inequality, and its salience in the modern world order. The contributors take stock of the key concepts involved in contemporary debates – capital, wealth and income distribution, economic development, private and collective assets, financialization – and evaluate the evidence for both common and contrasting historical trends in national statistical data sources. To the developed economies upon which Piketty drew are added contributions covering Latin America, Africa, India and Japan, providing a global perspective upon a global phenomenon. The book seeks to provide readers with a deeper awareness and understanding of the significance of inequality in economic development, the varying pace and nature of economic change around the world, and the manner in which this process of change affects the distribution of incomes and wealth in diverse economies. The collection marks an important step in the process of developing Piketty’s analytical framework and empirical material, overcoming some of their limitations and helping to cement a lasting place for inequality in the future agenda of economics and economic history.