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Industrial Policy Is Back

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Michael R. Strain, Dani Rodrik, Réka Juhász, Nathan Lane, Joseph E. Stiglitz, Michael Spence, Mariana Mazzucato

From semiconductors to electric vehicles, governments are identifying the strategic industries of the future and intervening to support them – abandoning decades of neoliberal orthodoxy in the process. Are industrial policies the key to tackling twenty-first-century economic challenges or a recipe for market distortions and lower efficiency?

  1. BP india at last Photo by Indranil Aditya/NurPhoto via Getty Images

    India at Last?

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    Shashi Tharoor, Milan Vaishnav, Ashoka Mody, Brahma Chellaney, Arvind Subramanian, Josh Felman

    Throughout India’s G20 presidency, which culminates in this week’s summit in New Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government has orchestrated an unprecedented marketing campaign portraying the country as a global economic and diplomatic powerhouse. But, despite some favorable trends and impressive recent achievements, some believe that hype springs eternal.

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    Why Is China’s Economy Faltering?

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    Takatoshi Ito, Nancy Qian, Yi Fuxian, Kenneth Rogoff, Stephen S. Roach, Richard Haass, James K. Galbraith

    Even as China’s growth miracle unfolded, many warned of a slowdown and cautioned that the country, like so many before it, could become ensnared in the middle-income trap, unable to claw its way to high-income status. With the real-estate sector in turmoil, youth unemployment skyrocketing, and growth slowing sharply, have the China pessimists been proved right?

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    Will Donald Trump’s Indictments Have Economic Consequences?

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    George Soros, Jeffrey Frankel, James K. Galbraith, Joseph E. Stiglitz, Lawrence H. Summers, Laura Tyson

    Reactions to Donald Trump’s criminal indictments have tended to focus on the implications for US democracy, and for good reason. But with George Soros warning that the cases against Trump could trigger a constitutional crisis, we asked PS commentators to assess the possible economic repercussions.

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    The Long Life of Inflation

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    Michael R. Strain, Mario I. Blejer, Piroska Nagy Mohácsi, Jeffrey Frankel, James K. Galbraith

    The US Federal Reserve has raised interest rates at 11 of its last 12 policy meetings, winning it kudos for bringing about a significant drop in inflation without triggering a spike in unemployment or a recession. Has the Fed pulled off a soft landing, or should Americans be bracing for more turbulence?

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    Who Controls AI?

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    Daron Acemoglu, Simon Johnson, Austin Lentsch, Maria Eitel, Anne-Marie Slaughter, Fadi Chehadé, Harold James

    While generative artificial intelligence has inspired no shortage of doomsayers, whether the technology does more harm or good will depend on how it is developed, by whom, and to what ends. What will it take to ensure that AI innovation is pursued responsibly, and that the results are applied in ways that bring broad-based benefits?

  7. BQ - inflation target Chen Mengtong/China News Service/VCG via Getty Images

    Is 2% Really the Right Inflation Target for Central Banks?

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    Michael J. Boskin, John H. Cochrane, Brigitte Granville, Kenneth Rogoff

    Despite slowing price growth, the US Federal Reserve has raised its benchmark policy rate by another 25 basis points, to a range of 5.25% to 5.5% – its highest level in more than two decades. With the European Central Bank also hiking rates over lingering inflation concerns, we asked PS commentators whether the fixation on 2% is warranted.

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    Is Israel’s Democracy in Danger?

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    Ido Baum, Shlomo Ben-Ami, Nicholas Reed Langen, Yofi Tirosh

    Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has vowed to press on with his blatantly anti-democratic judicial reforms. With anti-government protests continuing to rock Tel Aviv and other Israeli cities, we asked PS commentators what comes next for Israel.

  9. bp russia coup MIKHAIL TERESHCHENKO/SPUTNIK/AFP via Getty Images

    Cracks in the Kremlin

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    Wacław Radziwinowicz, Nina L. Khrushcheva, Rana Mitter, Ana Palacio

    With Wagner Group chief Yevgeny Prigozhin having ordered his mercenaries to halt their advance on Moscow and exiled himself to Belarus, one might assume that Vladimir Putin has escaped the most brazen challenge to his rule to date. But despite its failure, Prigozhin’s mutiny may have exposed fundamental weaknesses in the Putin regime.

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    A Financing Revolution in Paris?

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    Emmanuel Macron, Mia Amor Mottley, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, Ursula von der Leyen, Charles Michel, Olaf Scholz, Fumio Kishida, William Ruto, Macky Sall, Cyril Ramaphosa, Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Rishi Sunak, Joseph Biden, Jr., Barry Eichengreen, Ruurd Brouwer, Brigitte Granville, Sébastien Treyer, Bertrand Badré, John Antonio Briceño, Jennifer Morris

    Developing economies struggling to cope with a range of crises, from overwhelming debts to escalating climate impacts, and world leaders are gathering in Paris to attempt to devise a way out. But will the Summit for a New Global Financing Pact come close to matching its ambitions?

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    The AI Apocalypse?

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    George Soros, Simon Johnson, Daron Acemoglu, Sylvia Barmack, Michael R. Strain, Jim O'Neill, Gabriela Ramos, Mariana Mazzucato

    Few technologies are as powerful – or as polarizing – as artificial intelligence. While more sanguine predictions may well be vindicated, this is far from guaranteed, and plausible catastrophic scenarios abound.

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    The Global Economy’s Geopolitical Timebomb

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    Yu Yongding, Zhang Jun, Nancy Qian, Nouriel Roubini, Stephen S. Roach

    The strategic rivalry between the United States and China is intensifying rapidly, and judging by US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s recent speech on the matter, further escalation is to be expected. This has contributed to dire predictions about China’s economic prospects, but both sides stand to lose.

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    Into the AI Abyss?

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    Michael R. Strain, Daron Acemoglu, Simon Johnson, Diane Coyle, Slavoj Žižek

    People around the world have been feverishly engaging with OpenAI’s ChatGPT for months, yet we have barely scratched the surface of what generative artificial intelligence can do. Its capabilities are widely expected to transform our economies and societies, though there is far less agreement that the changes will be for the better.

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