From the 1st to the 3rd of October 2015, the Nelson Mandela Foundation (NMF) hosted Professor Thomas Piketty, renowned economist and author of the bestselling Capital in the 21st Century.
The NMF was a partner at events held at the University of Cape Town, the University of the Witwaterstrand and the University of Johannesburg. Piketty also served as the speaker at the 13th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture and provided additional inputs at the Social Partners Dialogue with leaders in business, labour and the state.
The following paper serves as a critical reflection on Piketty’s visit, his views on South Africa and the debates which emerged. Whilst not ignoring Piketty’s broader work, the focus is on his visit. Further emphasis is placed on themes that were continually reiterated during the dialogues by both panellists as well as the audiences.