Thomas Piketty

Inequality – capital and carbon in 21st century

Environmental degradation, in particular climate change and rising economic inequalities, are two challenges for the decades to come. Both challenges endanger democratic institutions and social contracts. In order to address these two challenges, it is essential to better understand interactions between economic inequalities and environmental degradation. In this lecture, Thomas Piketty draws lessons from his work on world inequality dynamics (Capital in the 21st century, 2014). He also presents from new research with Lucas Chancel looking at trends in the global inequality of carbon emissions (1998-2013) and analyzes prospects for an equitable adaptation fund.

Wednesday 25.11.2015

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Thomas Piketty is Professor of Economics at the Paris School of Economics. He is the author of numerous articles published in journals such as the Quarterly Journal of Economics, the Journal of Political Economy, the American Economic Review and the Review of Economic Studies, and of a dozen books. He has done major historical and theoretical work on the interplay between economic development and the distribution of income and wealth. In particular, he is the initiator of the recent literature on the long run evolution of top income shares in national income (now available in the World Top Incomes Database). He is also the author of the international best-seller Capital in the 21st century. These works have led to radically question the optimistic relationship between development and inequality posited by Kuznets, and to emphasize the role of political, social and fiscal institutions in the historical evolution of income and wealth distribution.

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