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. 

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What We Are Reading Today: Modern Architecture and Climate by Daniel A. Barber

Updated 08 July 2020

What We Are Reading Today: Modern Architecture and Climate by Daniel A. Barber

Modern Architecture and Climate explores how leading architects of the 20th century incorporated climate-mediating strategies into their designs, and shows how regional approaches to climate adaptability were essential to the development of modern architecture. Focusing on the period surrounding World War II—before fossil-fuel powered air-conditioning became widely available—Daniel Barber brings to light a vibrant and dynamic architectural discussion involving design, materials, and shading systems as means of interior climate control. 

He looks at projects by well-known architects such as Richard Neutra, Le Corbusier, Lúcio Costa, Mies van der Rohe, and Skidmore, Owings, and Merrill, and the work of climate-focused architects such as MMM Roberto, Olgyay and Olgyay, and Cliff May. Drawing on the editorial projects of James Marston Fitch, Elizabeth Gordon, and others, he demonstrates how images and diagrams produced by architects helped conceptualize climate knowledge, alongside the work of meteorologists, physicists, engineers, and social scientists. Barber describes how this novel type of environmental media catalyzed new ways of thinking about climate and architectural design.

Extensively illustrated with archival material, Modern Architecture and Climate provides global perspectives on modern architecture and its evolving relationship with a changing climate, showcasing designs from Latin America, Europe, the United States, the Middle East, and Africa. This timely and important book reconciles the cultural dynamism of architecture with the material realities of ever-increasing carbon emissions from the mechanical cooling systems of buildings, and offers a historical foundation for today’s zero-carbon design.