This is an article from World Review: The State of Democracy, a special section that examines global policy and affairs, and is published in conjunction with the annual Athens Democracy Forum.
The coronavirus pandemic has exacerbated the gap between the haves and have-nots and thrown capitalism into question: That is the conclusion reached by Joseph Stiglitz and Hervé Berville, two economists who spoke at this year’s Athens Democracy Forum, an annual event held in association with The New York Times.
Professor Stiglitz — winner of the 2001 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences, a former chief economist at the World Bank and a professor at Columbia University — said in a pre-conference interview that the private sector had proven incapable of responding alone to the global health challenge and that government had a big role to play.
Mr. Berville — a French deputy from the centrist party of President Emmanuel Macron and author of a 2018 report on reforming French aid policy — said in a separate conversation that rich countries had spent billions on themselves and done little to help those countries that needed it the most.
The following interviews have been edited and condensed.
Professor Stiglitz, do you think that the pandemic will pave the way for a more socially conscious capitalism?
Yes, very much so, and for several reasons. We saw that, as in the financial crisis of 2008, markets were not quite as “good” as we thought. They weren’t resilient. They couldn’t make face
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