The 40th Conference on the Political Economy of the World-System provided a unique opportunity to take stock of some of the enduring theoretical and empirical contributions of this perspective, and to identify promising directions for future inquiry and discussion. To this end, the conference brought together scholars offering analytical syntheses of major fields of inquiry. World-system scholars also emphasize the importance of critically assessing the types of evidence and methodologies that are most adequate to apprehend the world as a whole, over time, as the relevant unit of analysis. World-system analyses have been recasting the study of between- and within-nation country inequality as constituent aspects of a single field of inquiry: the study of inequality and social stratification as processes that always have been global in their very essence. Global social stratification pivots around institutional arrangements that render distributional outcomes as simultaneously "national", "gendered", "racialized", and "global" processes.