Norms and Values of New Middle Class Consumers and Citizens: What do they care about?

The likelihood of achieving more responsible, sustainable and inclusive development trajectories in a polycentric world at least partly depends on the priorities of new middle class citizens and consumers from the Global South. Will they increasingly become active and pro-developmental citizens and consumers, and what will they perceive as pro-developmental? At this point in time we know very little about the preferences of one of the largest and rapidly growing constituencies in the global economy, a very heterogeneous group loosely defined as the new middle classes. Initial research indicates that there is no reason to expect that new middle class consumers and citizens will simply copy the preferences of established OECD middle class consumers and citizens, also because their basic characteristics are so different. This panel will bring together researchers from different backgrounds and disciplines that are venturing into this largely uncharted territory of exploring what these new middle class consumers really care about. Next to an already emerging group of researchers on this theme, the panel will also publish an open invitation.