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The Princeton Lecture: The Butterfly Defect – How Globalisation Creates Systemic Risks

Thursday 27 March 2014

1 Hour


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Globalisation has brought us vast benefits including growth in incomes, education, innovation and connectivity.  Professor Ian Goldin, director of the Oxford Martin School, argues that it also has the potential to destabilise our societies. In The Butterfly Defect, to be published in May, he and co-author Mike Mariathasan, assistant professor of finance at the University of Vienna, argue that the recent financial crisis is an example of the risks that the world will face in the coming decades. The risks spread across supply chains, pandemics, infrastructure, ecology, climate change, economics and politics. Unless these risks are addressed, says Goldin, they could lead to greater protectionism, xenophobia, nationalism and to deglobalisation, rising conflict and slower growth.

Goldin is professor of globalisation and development at the University of Oxford. He is a former vice-president of the World Bank and advisor to President Nelson Mandela. His books include Divided Nations, Globalisation for Development, and Exceptional People.

In association with Oxford Martin School, festival ideas partner.