Economics Speaker, Author of The Great Degeneration
Riffing on everything from the strengths and limitation of American global power, the costs and benefits of economic globalization and the interface between finance and politics, Niall Ferguson's themes have urgent relevance to the present as well as the past. He is truly a modern historian, using the information of the past to try and navigate the fog of the future. He is a Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and a Visiting Professor at Tsinghua University in Beijing.
A prolific commentator on contemporary politics and economics, Ferguson writes and reviews regularly for the British and American press, including The Boston Globe and a weekly column in London's Sunday Times. In 2004 TIME Magazine named him as one of the world's hundred most influential people. He is a regular contributor to television and radio on both sides of the Atlantic. His many prizes and awards include the Benjamin Franklin Prize for Public Service (2010), the Hayek Prize for Lifetime Achievement (2012), and the Ludwig Erhard Prize for Economic Journalism (2013). He is also the founder and Managing Director of Greenmantle LLC, a Cambridge-based advisory firm.
Niall Ferguson Speech Topics
A superb speaker, Ferguson’s presentations are celebrated for their scintillating wit and analytical clarity. Some of his speech topics include:
- Populism and Globalization: Politics in the Age of Trump
- Networks versus Hierarchies: Silicon Valley in Historical Perspective
- The Descent of Money: Are We Stuck with Economic Stagnation or Can We Bounce Back?
- The Geopolitical Taper: Can American Power Make a Comeback?
- The Great Degeneration: How Institutions Decay and Economies Die
- Civilization: The West and the Rest
- Business Empires: How Big Companies Rise and Fall
- Is This the Chinese Century?
- Are Humans Redundant?
Civilization: The West and the Rest
From one of our most renowned historians, Civilization is the definitive history of Western civilization's rise to global dominance-and the "killer applications" that made this improbable ascent possible.
The rise to global predominance of Western civilization is the single most important historical phenomenon of the past five hundred years. All over the world, an astonishing proportion of people now work for Western-style companies, study at Western-style universities, vote for Western-style governments, take Western medicines, wear Western clothes, and even work Western hours. Yet six hundred years ago the petty kingdoms of Western Europe seemed unlikely to achieve much more than perpetual internecine warfare. It was Ming China or Ottoman Turkey that had the look of world civilizations. How did the West overtake its Eastern rivals? And has the zenith of Western power now passed? In Civilization: The West and the Rest, bestselling author Niall Ferguson argues that, beginning in the fifteenth century, the West developed six powerful new concepts that the Rest lacked: competition, science, the rule of law, consumerism, modern medicine, and the work ethic. These were the "killer applications" that allowed the West to leap ahead of the Rest, opening global trade routes, exploiting newly discovered scientific laws, evolving a system of representative government, more than doubling life expectancy, unleashing the Industrial Revolution, and embracing a dynamic work ethic.
Civilization shows just how fewer than a dozen Western empires came to control more than half of humanity and four fifths of the world economy. Yet now, Ferguson argues, the days of Western predominance are numbered-not because of clashes with rival civilizations, but simply because the Rest have now downloaded the six killer apps we once monopolized-while the West has literally lost faith in itself. Civilization does more than tell the gripping story of the West's slow rise and sudden demise; it also explains world history with verve, clarity, and wit. Controversial but cogent and compelling, Civilization is Ferguson at his very best.
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