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Thomas Friedman On The World In 2019

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author, described as ‘the most influential columnist in America’, brought his wisdom and insight to the geopolitical and economic upheavals facing the world today.

‘A global star … given his track record as a zeitgeist thermometer, we should all pay attention’ – Financial Times

The world in 2019 is looking increasingly chaotic and unpredictable. Trump has declared a ‘national emergency’ over immigration at America’s southern border. A humanitarian catastrophe is unfolding in Venezuela, forcing the US to consider the option of military intervention. Britain is on the brink of a chaotic no-deal Brexit. Tensions between China and the West have skyrocketed after Trump’s trade war and the Huawei dispute. So who better to make sense of these unsettling and fast-changing times than Thomas Friedman, a writer described as ‘the most influential columnist in America’? A three-time Pulitzer Prize-winner and columnist on The New York Times, Friedman has been at the forefront of geopolitical and economic upheaval for nearly 40 years, from the first Lebanon War to the collapse of Lehman Brothers. He has written a series of bestselling books laying out the implications of globalisation, climate change and technological advance.

In April 2019 Friedman brought his wisdom and insight to the world’s current predicaments: How should the West respond to an emboldened China? How do we rebuild the global economy so that it creates prosperity for everyone, not just the few? And how, above all, should we handle the tectonic shifts – technological, demographic and political – that are reshaping our world today?



Thomas Friedman

Author, reporter, and op-ed columnist for the NYT

Foreign affairs columnist for the New York Times. His books include The World Is Flat (2005), which won the first Financial Times/Goldman Sachs Business Book of the Year Award; Hot, Flat, and Crowded (2008); and Thank You For Being Late: An Optimist's Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations (2016), which was shortlisted for the FT and McKinsey Business Book of the Year.

Rana Mitter

Historian, author and broadcaster

Historian, author and broadcaster. He is director of the University China Centre at the University of Oxford, where he is Professor of the History and Politics of Modern China. His new book, China's Good War: How World War II is Shaping a New Nationalism, will be published in September this year. He is a regular presenter of the arts and ideas programme Free Thinking on BBC Radio 3.


Speakers are subject to change.