Professor Joseph Stiglitz joins the BBC’s Justin Rowlatt, a phalanx of French economists and the Parisian public, as they debate the cost of inequality at Paris Dauphine University.

Professor Stiglitz is a Nobel Prize winning economist, a former advisor of Bill Clinton and former chief economist of the World Bank. His counsel is sought by much of the developing world’s leadership and by national governments across the globe. He has a stark warning to make: inequality is so rampant that all over the world it is depressing economies and dividing societies. Even when they conspicuously live the high life, the rich are incapable of consuming all they earn - the money is piling up and it is a drag on growth. The rest of us – with declining wages and less influence on politicians – are borrowing more to keep living standards the same.

Stiglitz wants to curb financial sectors, restore full employment, get governments to drive growth and raise taxes. Is he right? Can a ‘state-led’ capitalism lead to high growth and stable economies? Is equality really the way to restore health to advanced economies around the world?

(Photo: Joseph Stiglitz and Justin Rowlatt - Copyright Université Paris-Dauphine)

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55 minutes

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New Year's Day 2014 01:06 GMT