Will London Survive Brexit?

by Howard Davies Added 26.04.2017
LONDON – Brexit has set a hungry cat among the financial pigeons of the City of London. No one yet knows what kind of access to the European Union’s single financial market UK-based firms will have, and Prime Minister Theresa May’s call for a...

Frexit: how a Le Pen victory could unleash a tsunami of economic volatility

by Panicos O. Demetriades Added 25.04.2017
With Marine Le Pen through to the second round of the French presidential elections, the prospect of Frexit, which is at the centre of her economic policies, is beginning to spook financial markets. While the possibility of Le Pen winning in the...

The Coming Technology Policy Debate

by Michael J. Boskin Added 24.04.2017
STANFORD – What do the leaks of unflattering email from the Democratic National Committee’s hacked servers during the 2016 US presidential election campaign and the deafening hour-long emergency-warning siren in Dallas, Texas, have in common?...

Macron and Le Pen to face off for French presidency – but she won't be pleased with first round result

by Paul Smith Added 24.04.2017
In the end, the polls were right. Emmanuel Macron will go into the second round of the French presidential election against Marine Le Pen. For a while it seemed as though a dead heat were on the cards but, in the end, Macron took first place,...

Why China is serious about becoming the global leader on climate change

by David Tyfield Added 15.04.2017
The Trump administration’s hostility towards climate action and research leaves a void in global climate politics. Could China step up? The world’s largest absolute emitter could certainly use US inaction as an excuse to backslide on its...

40% of California Grid Power from Solar, Sometimes Costs less than Nothing

by Juan Cole Added 15.04.2017
For the first time, on the day of March 23, 40% of Californian grid power between 11 am and 2 pm was generated by utility-scale solar plants. This proportion was a seasonal effect but not a fluke, and it certainly points to what will be routine...

Why states are pushing ahead with clean energy despite Trump's embrace of coal

by Bill Ritter, Jr. Added 15.04.2017
Alamosa Photovoltaic Plan, south-central Colorado. Energy.gov/Flickr On Tuesday, March 28, President Trump traveled to the Environmental Protection Agency to sign an executive order rolling back a number of climate-related regulations that have...

Trump the War President?

by Ian Buruma Added 12.04.2017
NEW YORK – Nothing seemed to be going right for Donald Trump during the first 11 weeks of his presidency. Federal courts blocked his attempts to ban citizens from six Muslim-majority countries from entering the US. He failed to repeal former...

A Fiscal Reality Test for US Republicans

by Nouriel Roubini Added 11.04.2017
NEW YORK – US President Donald Trump’s first major legislative goal – to “repeal and replace” the 2010 Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) – has already imploded, owing to Trump and congressional Republicans’ naiveté about the complexities of...

The Trump Divide

by James J. Zogby Added 11.04.2017
    Over the years, there have been many divides that have defined the American social, cultural, or political landscape. Some have been philosophical, regional, issue-based, racial, economic, gender or age-related. But none have been as deep or...

Crouching Donald, Paper Tiger

by Barry Eichengreen Added 10.04.2017
BERKELEY – Donald Trump’s comments about China during the US presidential campaign didn’t exactly bolster high hopes for Sino-American relations once he was elected. Trump denounced China for “taking our jobs,” and “[stealing] hundreds of...

Storm Clouds Over Korea

by Joschka Fischer Added 09.04.2017
BERLIN – Decades after the end of the Korean War and the partition of Korea, the conflict on the Korean Peninsula remains one of the most dangerous and intractable problems of our time. And today it is more dangerous – and seemingly intractable...

Delivering on Promises to the Middle Class

by Michael Spence and David Brady Added 08.04.2017
MILAN – US President Donald Trump owes his electoral victory largely to the older white middle- and working-class voters who have missed out on many of the benefits of the economic-growth patterns of the last three decades. Yet his...

The Battle Over Syria’s Future

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 01.04.2017
As we approach the sixth year of Syria’s civil war, the whole international community remains completely inept and has failed to join together in the search for a solution that could end the horrifying slaughter of thousands of innocent...

Why Past Performance is Fast Becoming Worth Ignoring

by Daniel Wagner Added 01.04.2017
How many times in the recent past have pollsters, stock pickers, and political prognosticators been wrong – even spectacularly wrong – in their predictions, having relied upon history and past performance to attempt to predict the future? The...

There is a jobs crisis brewing that the Trump administration should not ignore

by Jeff Greene and Vivek Wadhwa Added 01.04.2017
Everyone has heard the old anecdote about the frog in a pot of water. If the temperature is raised slowly, the frog won’t react, eventually allowing itself to get boiled. That’s where we’re heading as a country when it comes to technological...

America's evangelical Christian right isn't the political force it once was

by Benjamin Huskinson Added 01.04.2017
Anyone who has been reading about how evangelical Christians were “crucial” to Donald Trump’s victory in November 2016 would probably be forgiven for assuming that the US’s religious right still wields enormous clout, whether as a political bloc...

Trump - American vertigo. Global disaster.

by Bernard-Henri Lévy Added 30.03.2017
PARIS – Donald Trump’s presidency is presenting the world with countless problems. That the Federal Bureau of Investigation is investigating his campaign and that close associates (his son-in-law and close White House adviser Jared Kushner) will...

How rupture with mainland Europe caused Britain to falter for hundreds of years

by Stephen Church Added 29.03.2017
By triggering Article 50 to start Britain’s process of exiting the European Union, Theresa May will launch the country into the unknown. History provides examples of Britain leaving Europe – and sometimes Europe leaving Britain – that help give...

Serbian Presidential Election: Next Battle in War to Defend Democratic Values in Europe

by Robert Creamer Added 29.03.2017
  Throughout Europe, democratic values have been under assault. Generally these attacks have come from forces of the authoritarian, nationalist right – in Poland, Hungary, Russia, the Czech Republic, Germany, the Netherlands, even Britain -- and...

The Temptations of a Resilient China

by Stephen S. Roach Added 28.03.2017
NEW HAVEN – Another growth scare has come and gone for the Chinese economy. This, of course, is very much at odds with Western conventional wisdom, which has long expected a hard landing in China. Once again, the Western perspective missed the...

Britain’s Messy Divorce

by Chris Patten Added 27.03.2017
LONDON – As Britain formally triggers the doleful negotiations to exclude itself from the mainstream of European politics and economics, Prime Minister Theresa May refuses to use the word “divorce” to describe what is happening. My wife, a...

The World’s Airports and Airlines Need More Human Intelligence

by Daniel Wagner Added 25.03.2017
This week’s restrictions on larger electronic devices in carry-on luggage from many of the Middle East and North Africa’s largest airports by the governments of the US and UK is an effort at making it more difficult for terrorists to attempt to...

Robotization Without Taxation?

by Robert J. Shiller Added 24.03.2017
NEW HAVEN – The idea of a tax on robots was raised last May in a draft report to the European Parliament prepared by MEP Mady Delvaux from the Committee on Legal Affairs. Emphasizing how robots could boost inequality, the report proposed that...

It is Comey who should be Investigated

by Juan Cole Added 21.03.2017
FBI Director James Comey confirmed Monday that his agency has since last summer been investigating the circle of Donald J. Trump for their contacts with the Russian Federation during last year’s election campaign. He also denied Trump’s...

Can Israel Fight A War On Three Fronts? A Nightmarish Scenario

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 18.03.2017
Although Prime Minister Netanyahu is known for his focus on the Palestinian and Iranian threats to Israel’s national security, in recent months he has increasingly sounded the alarm over Iran in particular rather than the Palestinians. As the...

Wind Power Juggernaut Really doing for 100K Workers what Trump only Promised

by Juan Cole Added 18.03.2017
Big news on the wind power front. First, it has emerged in the US as the number one renewable energy source, generating more electricity than hydro-electric for the first time. This milestone came in 2016 after 8,727 megawatts (MW) of new wind...

Fund management mega merger shows the easyJet effect is hitting the City

by John Colley Added 18.03.2017
Some of the financial sector’s biggest firms are feeling the pinch. The rise of low-cost investment products which simply track markets is forcing some dramatic moves and the proposed £11 billion merger of Standard Life and Aberdeen Asset...

Globalization and the Rise of “Smart” Protectionism

by Daniel Wagner Added 15.03.2017
Globalization was intended to eliminate borders for the benefit of the free flow of trade, investment, information and people. It has had a good degree of success in accomplishing that, but the blowback from the globalization process has had a...

War Against the West

by Ian Buruma Added 13.03.2017
NEW YORK – In 1938, Aurel Kolnai, a Hungarian philosopher of Jewish origin living in exile, published his most famous book, The War Against the West, an investigation of the ideas underpinning National Socialism. Kolnai seems to have read every...

Malaysia’s Future Role in Saudi Arabia’s Islamic Military Alliance

by Giorgio Cafiero and Daniel Wagner Added 10.03.2017
Saudi King Salman is currently on a three-week tour across six Asian countries. The duration of the trip underscores the commercial and geopolitical importance which Saudi Arabia attributes to Asia. It comes at a time when the kingdom is...

Has Trump Lost It?

by Joe Peyronnin Added 09.03.2017
“The best defense is a strong offense” is a centuries old military tactic that can lead to a strategic advantage. But it is hard to understand how President Donald Trump benefits from tweeting as a fact Saturday that President Barack Obama had...

Putin’s Dance with the Taliban

by Brahma Chellaney Added 09.03.2017
NEW DELHI – Russia may be in decline economically and demographically, but, in strategic terms, it is a resurgent power, pursuing a major military rearmament program that will enable it to continue expanding its global influence. One of the...

Trade Truths for Trumpians and Brexiteers

by Jim O'Neill Added 08.03.2017
LONDON – Here’s a reality check for British and American policymakers, and for the many pundits who frequently comment on world trade without understanding its realities: data on Germany’s total exports and imports in 2016 indicate that its...

Russian interference could be the greatest threat to European democracy

by Richard Maher Added 04.03.2017
With important national elections scheduled this year in the Netherlands, France and Germany, European officials on edge about possible Russian interference are pursuing various measures to counter it. But with a daily onslaught of fake and...

Rethinking Productivity Growth

by J. Bradford DeLong Added 04.03.2017
BERKELEY – Today, the world’s population is, on average, about 20 times richer than it was during the long Agrarian Age. Between 7000 BC and AD 1500, resources were scarce, technological progress was slow, and Malthusian pressures kept almost...

Realism About Trumpism

by Joschka Fischer Added 28.02.2017
BERLIN – Little more than a month after US President Donald Trump’s inauguration, it has become clear that nothing good will come of his presidency. Unfortunately, the pessimists turned out to be realists: things really are as bad as they said...

Don’t Cry for Corporate America

by Stephen S. Roach Added 27.02.2017
NEW HAVEN – Corporate tax cuts are coming in the United States. While this push pre-dates last November’s presidential election, President Donald Trump’s Make-America-Great-Again mantra has sealed the deal. Beleaguered US businesses, goes the...

Baltic Dread

by Imbi Paju Added 25.02.2017
TALLINN – News media nowadays are rife with speculation about whether – if not when – US President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin will divide the world between them. We in Estonia and the other Baltic states now fear being...

Populism Versus the Media

by Chris Patten Added 23.02.2017
LONDON – I am old enough to remember when the best thing about populism was that it was not popular. Nativism, in any form, did not hit many political bull’s-eyes. Economic protectionists didn’t win elections. Voters, even those concerned about...

Trump And Netanyahu: Embracing Illusions, Ignoring Reality

by Alon Ben-Meir Added 22.02.2017
President Trump remained true to his customary flip-flopping on just about every issue when he stated during a joint press conference with Prime Minister Netanyahu that he is “looking at two-state and one-state, and I like the one that both...

Trump/Netanyahu Meet: an Exercise in Fawning, Fantasy, and Anti-Palestinian Incitement

by James J. Zogby Added 22.02.2017
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's meeting with US President Donald Trump was overshadowed by dramatic and unsettling events that preceded and followed their perfectly bizarre press conference.    The week began with the forced...

How Trumpocracy Corrupts Democracy

by Sandra Navidi Added 21.02.2017
MUNICH – American democracy is a complex, self-organizing system. In terms of network science, President Donald Trump is a “superhub”: the most well-connected human “node,” located in the center of the network. While Trump does not have control...

Trump's Russia scandals could be about to get much, much worse

by Luca Trenta Added 20.02.2017
Whatever one thinks of the Trump administration’s policies, it is difficult to ignore that the new president’s tenure has so far been characterised by incompetence and carelessness. And while it’s easy to laugh at daft missteps such as an aide...

Trump Should Tackle America’s Infrastructure Crisis Head On

by Daniel Wagner Added 19.02.2017
This weekend’s mandatory evacuation order for residents downstream from California’s Oroville Dam is a reminder of what a perilous state so much of America’s infrastructure is in. In 2005,  three environmental groups filed a motion with the...

The European Union First

by Javier Solana Added 19.02.2017
MUNICH – The world needs the European Union now more than ever. Despite recent crises and the hard blow dealt by the Brexit vote, the EU may well be the world’s best line of defense against today’s most serious threats: isolationism,...

Ensuring Euro-Atlantic Security

by Des Browne, Wolfgang Ischinger, Igor S. Ivanov, and Sam Nunn Added 16.02.2017
MUNICH – The chasm between Russia and the West appears to be wider now than at any point since the Cold War. But, despite stark differences, there are areas of existential common interest. As we did during the darkest days of the Cold War,...

Questions about Judgement:  Trump appointed Flynn in the First Place

by Juan Cole Added 14.02.2017
"Every time Trump dances away from criticizing Putin, you have to wonder if he was in the same basket with Flynn. Kompromat." The sudden resignation of Trump National Security Adviser Mike Flynn on Monday evening clearly was actually a firing....

The European Unraveling?

by Ana Palacio Added 13.02.2017
".....Trump’s first weeks in office convey a singular ideological perspective – the one long espoused by White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon, an ultra-nationalist, acolyte of the Italian fascist philosopher Julius Evola, and long-time...

Navigating the Trumpscape

by Michael Mandelbaum Added 12.02.2017
WASHINGTON, DC – To say that US President Donald Trump’s administration made waves in its initial weeks would be an understatement. Large protests across the United States and around the world attended his inauguration, and have continued since....
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Who Owns History?

by Lawrence Weschler Added 24.04.2017
Left: Henry Taylor, “The Times Thay Aint a Changing Fast Enough!” (2016); Right: Dana Schutz, “Open Casket” (2017); courtesy of the Whitney Museum NEW YORK – Take a look at the two paintings above. Both draw on iconic photographic images from...

Six articles to make you optimistic about the planet’s future this Earth Day

by Sarah Bassett Added 22.04.2017
April 22 is Earth Day, one of the world’s largest environmental movements against climate change. It’s a time when people around the world come together to defend the environment against the impact of humans. With a climate change-denying Trump...

Old Masters in London

by David Galenson Added 19.04.2017
London’s National Gallery has created six new exhibition rooms on its ground floor, and has filled them with paintings by Dutch and Flemish masters. After spending a few hours immersed in such quintessentially Dutch works as Meindert Hobbema’s...

Creativity: Revolutions and Evolutions

by David Galenson Added 18.04.2017
One reason why creativity is often falsely assumed to be restricted to conceptual innovation, and experimental innovation is overlooked, is that there is frequently a great difference in how conspicuously the two types of innovation arrive....

This Easter, an ancient branch of Christianity faces a threat to its very existence

by Mariz Tadros Added 14.04.2017
In the run-up to Easter, it is customary for Egypt’s Coptic Christians to go to church every evening. Churches are packed with worshippers – as they were on Palm Sunday, April 9, 2017, when a suicide bomber blew himself up at the altar in a...

What Google and Facebook must do about one of their biggest problems

by Vivek Wadhwa Added 14.04.2017
Google could lose as much as $750 million because of a boycott by advertisers, according to Nomura Research. Companies are protesting against the placement of their ads next to extremist and hateful content. An even worse offender is Facebook,...

China: Inside the world's largest higher education boom

by Katherine Stapleton Added 12.04.2017
A record-breaking 8m students will graduate from Chinese universities in 2017. This figure is nearly ten times higher than it was in 1997 and is more than double the number of students who will graduate this year in the US. Just two decades ago,...

The many reasons why less is more for the people choosing modest lives

by Teresa Belton Added 07.04.2017
The idea of a life lived modestly is gaining traction. Ten years ago, Samantha Weinberg, a mother of two young children, spent a year not shopping. Her aim was to reduce her environmental impact. The next year, Mark Boyle, founder of the online...

How a basic income could help build community in an age of individualism

by Max Harris and Alexander E. Kentikelenis Added 06.04.2017
What if every citizen had a guaranteed income, regardless of whether they are at work? In an age of austerity and the rolling back of social policies, this idea may sound radical – but it is gaining momentum. Advocates of a universal basic...

What history reveals about surges in anti-Semitism and anti-immigrant sentiments

by Ingrid Anderson Added 05.04.2017
This February, more than 100 gravestones were vandalized at the Chesed Shel Emeth Society Cemetery outside of St. Louis, Missouri and at the Jewish Mount Carmel Cemetery in Philadelphia. The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has called anti-Semitism...
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ESCAPE VELOCITY: An author’s battle to conquer an Emersonian orbit

by Jack Kohl Added 06.02.2017
During all of my adult life as an author and pianist, Ralph Waldo Emerson has been for me the supreme and unremitting guide to the Western canon. Emerson’s writings have dominated so much of my thought that the routines I have given to the study...

Author Jack Kohl just ‘stole it from life’

by Michael Johnson Added 01.02.2017
Rarely does a musician with a Juilliard background and a Ph.D. in piano performance find the energy, much less the time, to conceive, plot, write and publish a series of well-constructed novels. Jack Kohl, by Michael Johnson. After I read Jack...

Fact-Checking the WSJ [Editor's note: re Mark Twain]

by David Galenson Added 24.01.2017
The Wall Street Journal has made an egregious error. I'm not talking about their coverage of Donald Trump, Russian hacking, or any other such ephemera. This concerns something much more serious: classic literature. Mark Twain, ca. 1907. Image...

Elie Wiesel’s Early Work: Four Novels

by Mary L. Tabor Added 07.01.2017
A Talmudic question has much intrigued me: Two men are stranded in the desert. Only one has water. If he shares it, they both die; if he keeps it, he lives and his companion dies. What should he do? Rabbi Akiva taught that the man has the right...

Why Bob Dylan deserves his Nobel prize in literature

by Richard Brown Added 14.10.2016
To the surprise of many, Bob Dylan has become the first singer-songwriter to win the Nobel prize in literature. As the news broke, I was in the middle of teaching James Joyce to some undergraduates – an author who did not win the Nobel, but is...

The man behind Matilda – what Roald Dahl was really like

by Pojana Maneeyingsakul Added 13.09.2016
It is 100 years since the birth of Roald Dahl – considered by many to be the world’s number one storyteller. His books have received enthusiastic responses from millions of children all around the world. And his tales of the unexpected continue...

Three alternative romantic fiction authors that will heat up any beach trip

by Zoe Strimpel Added 04.07.2016
There’s no better way to escape the stresses and strains of work and – for many at the current juncture – the acute anxiety of geopolitics, than to put your reading into “romance” gear. Britain versus the world is a gloomy real-world problem;...
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Uchida in fine form with a Mozart classic

by Michael Johnson Added 15.04.2017
Pianist Mitsuko Uchida delivered a sparkling Mozart piano concerto No. 20 in D minor (K.466) with the Boston Symphony Orchestra under Andris Nelsons on Thursday, the eve of Easter weekend, to an enthusiastic full house at Symphony Hall. Ms....

Review of Seattle Opera’s production of Katya Kabanova

by James Bash Added 08.03.2017
Tragedy can happen anywhere. That’s why the 1950s setting in the United States looked comfortably appropriate in Seattle Opera’s production of “Katya Kabanova.” Designed by Genevieve Blanchett and Mark Howett, the white picket fence, the...

Relax, it’s just contemporary music

by Michael Johnson Added 02.03.2017
A friend of mine in Italy who has recorded some of John Cage’s prepared piano pieces struggles with many of the new keyboard works coming down the pike, devoting hours of practice to the mind-bending notation. He concludes, alas, that the level...

Voltaire comes home with an American accent

by Michael Johnson Added 28.01.2017
The Leonard Bernstein incidental music for Voltaire’s Candide seems even fresher today than it did 60 years ago when it flopped on Broadway. Over time the production has been reworked, massaged and matured, and now is finding remarkable...

Impresario Leiser fears young piano talent will get left behind

by Michael Johnson Added 17.12.2016
  Veteran impresario Jacques Leiser, summing up his 60 years of toil with some of the world’s greatest performers, is worried about today’s drift in the music business. He believes that too many young artists fail in their first few years...

Young Russian brings personal élan to Mussorgsky’s Pictures

by Michael Johnson Added 13.12.2016
  Ilya Rashkovsky is a rising young Siberian pianist, now based in Paris, whose new CD injects fresh élan into Modeste Mussorgsky’s delightful Pictures at an Exhibition. The performance shows no sign of battle fatigue despite being a mainstay of...

Angelich revives a Beethoven warhorse

by Michael Johnson Added 18.11.2016
The Franco-American pianist Nicholas Angelich delivered a freshly crafted version of a Beethoven warhorse, Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat, Op. 73, together with the Orchestre National Bordeaux Aquitaine conducted by Paul Daniel, in the...

Big Songs – the Power Behind the Old Broadway Musicals

by Michael Johnson Added 03.11.2016

Three Delightful Sides of Thomas Adès

by Michael Johnson Added 01.11.2016
Visiting star composer-pianist-conductor Thomas Adès put on a bold show of musical versatility Sunday afternoon at Jordan Hall, joining the Boston Symphony Chamber Players in selections ranging from Purcell to Stravinsky. Thomas Adès A true...

Soprano Nadja Michael stars in stellar production of “The Makropulos Case” at San Francisco Opera

by James Bash Added 21.10.2016
Humans have always had the desire to live forever. Even today there are those wealthy enough to have their bodies frozen in a cryogenic state and others who fervently believe that the wizards of Silicon Valley will preserve them digitally. Leoš...
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La La Land deserves its 14 Oscar nominations for asking us, quite simply, to feel

by Rebecca Harrison Added 24.02.2017
Having won five BAFTAs, including coveted awards for Best Film, Best Director (Damien Chazelle) and Best Actress (Emma Stone), La La Land is likely to win more statuettes at the Oscars – it has a record-equalling 14 nominations. Both lauded as...

Scorsese’s Silence is admirably faithful to the original Japanese novel

by Mark Williams Added 07.01.2017
The blogosphere has been awash this month with reviews of Martin Scorsese’s latest movie, Silence. The work represents a powerful reworking of the novel of the same name by the Japanese novelist, Endō Shūsaku and I, for one, shall never forget...

The Crown may be inaccurate but it's a cracking period drama

by Gabriele Neher Added 16.11.2016
The Crown, Netflix’s most ambitious and expensive original drama, had a reported budget of over US$100 million. The ten-part series charts the ascension of Elizabeth Windsor to the throne as Queen Elizabeth II, and follows the young monarch as...
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