The Ghosts of Summits Past

PRINCETON – The world is confronted by a dramatic financial crisis that many policymakers believe is more severe than the interwar Great Depression. Before 2008, experts said that a new Great Depression was impossible because of the strength and the depth of the cooperative mechanisms set up at the end of World War II.

The G-20 summit has thus created enormous expectations that internationalism may once again overcome a plethora of economic problems. Unfortunately, the magnitude of the expectations alone suggests that disappointment is almost certain.