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Niall Ferguson

Niall Ferguson

Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

 

 

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July 14, 2008

"China’s War on Nature"

Op-Ed, Financial Times

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

Niall Ferguson analyzes China's ability to use the 2008 Beijing Olympics as a way to peacefully gain power in international politics.

 

(AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)

December 26, 2013

"Mexico's Economic Reform Breakout"

Op-Ed, Wall Street Journal

By Pierpaolo Barbieri, Former Ernest May Fellow in History and Policy, International Security Program, 2011–2013 and Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

For much of the last decade, Mexico and Brazil were a study in contrasts. "Brazil Takes Off" was a typical magazine cover, depicting Rio's huge statue of Christ literally blasting off. The equivalent story for Mexico was "The War Next Door: Why Mexico's Drug Violence is America's Problem Too."

In the past two years, however, the roles have been reversed. Riots in São Paulo and the downfall of billionaire Eike Batista have badly dented Brazil's glamorous image. Meanwhile, a succession of bold moves by Mexico's charismatic new president, Enrique Peña Nieto, have finally awakened foreign observers to the fact that Mexico is Latin America's new "country of the future."

 

 

November 30, 2012

"Turning Points"

Op-Ed, The New York Times

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

We yearn for turning points, writes Niall Ferguson. "Just as economists have predicted nine out of the last five recessions, so journalists have surely reported nine out of the last five revolutions. Every election is hailed as epoch-making. Every president is expected to have a new foreign policy 'doctrine.' A minor redesign of a cellular phone is hailed by the devotees of the Apple cult as a 'paradigm shift.'"

 

 

July 30, 2012

"Facebook Won't Save Us"

Op-Ed, Newsweek

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

“Are you a technoptimist or a depressimist?” asks Niall Ferguson, Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University and a member of the Belfer Center’s Board of Directors. “This is the question I have been pondering after a weekend hanging with some of the superstars of Silicon Valley. I had never previously appreciated the immense gap that now exists between technological optimism, on the one hand, and economic pessimism, on the other. Silicon Valley sees a bright and beautiful future ahead. Wall Street and Washington see only storm clouds.”

 

 

April 30, 2012

"African Game Change"

Op-Ed, Newsweek

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

"In the years that lie before us, a great struggle will play out south of the Sahara: a struggle between man and Malthus. According to the Rev. Thomas Malthus’s famous principle—sometimes called the Malthusian trap—population grows geometrically, but the supply of food increases arithmetically. Viewed in those terms, many African countries today seem doomed to misery and vice," writes Belfer Center International Council member Niall Ferguson, "So is Africa heading over a demographic waterfall? Maybe not....Two things are changing the continent’s prospects. The first is the surging demand for the natural resources that are so abundant in Africa....The other game changer is mobile telephony....cellphones are giving poor Africans access to basic financial services for the first time."

 

(AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)

December 26, 2013

"Mexico's Economic Reform Breakout"

Op-Ed, Wall Street Journal

By Pierpaolo Barbieri, Former Ernest May Fellow in History and Policy, International Security Program, 2011–2013 and Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

For much of the last decade, Mexico and Brazil were a study in contrasts. "Brazil Takes Off" was a typical magazine cover, depicting Rio's huge statue of Christ literally blasting off. The equivalent story for Mexico was "The War Next Door: Why Mexico's Drug Violence is America's Problem Too."

In the past two years, however, the roles have been reversed. Riots in São Paulo and the downfall of billionaire Eike Batista have badly dented Brazil's glamorous image. Meanwhile, a succession of bold moves by Mexico's charismatic new president, Enrique Peña Nieto, have finally awakened foreign observers to the fact that Mexico is Latin America's new "country of the future."

 

July 30, 2012

"Facebook Won't Save Us"

Op-Ed, Newsweek

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

“Are you a technoptimist or a depressimist?” asks Niall Ferguson, Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University and a member of the Belfer Center’s Board of Directors. “This is the question I have been pondering after a weekend hanging with some of the superstars of Silicon Valley. I had never previously appreciated the immense gap that now exists between technological optimism, on the one hand, and economic pessimism, on the other. Silicon Valley sees a bright and beautiful future ahead. Wall Street and Washington see only storm clouds.”

 

July 30, 2012

"Facebook Won't Save Us"

Op-Ed, Newsweek

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

“Are you a technoptimist or a depressimist?” asks Niall Ferguson, Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University and a member of the Belfer Center’s Board of Directors. “This is the question I have been pondering after a weekend hanging with some of the superstars of Silicon Valley. I had never previously appreciated the immense gap that now exists between technological optimism, on the one hand, and economic pessimism, on the other. Silicon Valley sees a bright and beautiful future ahead. Wall Street and Washington see only storm clouds.”

 

April 30, 2012

"African Game Change"

Op-Ed, Newsweek

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

"In the years that lie before us, a great struggle will play out south of the Sahara: a struggle between man and Malthus. According to the Rev. Thomas Malthus’s famous principle—sometimes called the Malthusian trap—population grows geometrically, but the supply of food increases arithmetically. Viewed in those terms, many African countries today seem doomed to misery and vice," writes Belfer Center International Council member Niall Ferguson, "So is Africa heading over a demographic waterfall? Maybe not....Two things are changing the continent’s prospects. The first is the surging demand for the natural resources that are so abundant in Africa....The other game changer is mobile telephony....cellphones are giving poor Africans access to basic financial services for the first time."

 

July 30, 2012

"Facebook Won't Save Us"

Op-Ed, Newsweek

By Niall Ferguson, Member of the Board, Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs

“Are you a technoptimist or a depressimist?” asks Niall Ferguson, Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History at Harvard University and a member of the Belfer Center’s Board of Directors. “This is the question I have been pondering after a weekend hanging with some of the superstars of Silicon Valley. I had never previously appreciated the immense gap that now exists between technological optimism, on the one hand, and economic pessimism, on the other. Silicon Valley sees a bright and beautiful future ahead. Wall Street and Washington see only storm clouds.”

 
Events Calendar

We host a busy schedule of events throughout the fall, winter and spring. Past guests include: UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, former Vice President Al Gore, and former Soviet Union President Mikhail Gorbachev.