Inequality and Economic Security in Silicon Valley

This report is intended to take an in-depth look at the dimensions of income inequality (referred to throughout this report as “inequality”) in Silicon Valley and key trends over time. The report begins by addressing why income inequality should matter to Silicon Valley, followed by an analysis of trends in widening income inequality over the long term and in the most recent period. An analysis of long-term trends over the past 25 years (1989-2014) shows that widening income inequality is not just a recent phenomenon in Silicon Valley. At the same time focusing on just the most recent period for which data are available (2009-2014) reveals that trends in widening income inequality have been exacerbated even as the region has recovered from the Great Recession. The combination of long- and short-term trends point to the need for public policy responses that combat these trends, help mitigate the effects of increasing economic insecurity, and create a foundation for sustainable economic growth. This report highlights areas for state and local policy action to help ensure that households across the income distribution benefit more from Silicon Valley’s economic growth, while investing in housing options and transportation networks that better help these families live and thrive in the region.