What We Are Reading Today: Meeting globalization’s challenges

Updated 07 November 2019

What We Are Reading Today: Meeting globalization’s challenges

Authors: Luís Catão and Maurice Obstfeld

Globalization has expanded economic opportunities throughout the world, but it has also left many people feeling dispossessed, disenfranchised, and angry. 

Luís Catão and Maurice Obstfeld bring together some of today’s top economists to assess the benefits, costs, and daunting policy challenges of globalization,says a review on the Princeton University Press website. 

This timely and accessible book combines incisive analyses of the anatomy of globalization with innovative and practical policy ideas that can help to make it work better for everyone. Meeting Globalization’s Challenges draws on new research to examine the channels through which international trade and the diffusion of technology have enhanced the wealth of nations while also producing unequal benefits within and across countries. 

The book provides needed perspectives on the complex interplay of trade, deindustrialization, inequality, and the troubling surge of nationalism and populism —perspectives that are essential for crafting sound economic policies. 

Related


What We Are Reading Today: Porcelain by Suzanne L. Marchand

Updated 02 July 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Porcelain by Suzanne L. Marchand

Porcelain was invented in medieval China—but its secret recipe was first reproduced in Europe by an alchemist in the employ of the Saxon king Augustus the Strong. Saxony’s revered Meissen factory could not keep porcelain’s ingredients secret for long, however, and scores of Holy Roman princes quickly founded their own mercantile manufactories, soon to be rivaled by private entrepreneurs, eager to make not art but profits. As porcelain’s uses multiplied and its price plummeted, it lost much of its identity as aristocratic ornament, instead taking on a vast number of banal, yet even more culturally significant, roles. By the 19th and 20th centuries, it became essential to bourgeois dining, and also acquired new functions in insulator tubes, shell casings, and teeth.

Weaving together the experiences of entrepreneurs and artisans, state bureaucrats and female consumers, chemists and peddlers, Porcelain traces the remarkable story of “white gold” from its origins as a princely luxury item to its fate in Germany’s cataclysmic 20th century. For 300 years, porcelain firms have come and gone, but the industry itself, at least until very recently, has endured. After Augustus, porcelain became a quintessentially German commodity, integral to provincial pride, artisanal industrial production, and a familial sense of home.

Telling the story of porcelain’s transformation from coveted luxury to household necessity and flea market staple, Porcelain offers a fascinating alternative history of art, business, taste, and consumption in Central Europe.