Niall Ferguson spoke on “Degeneration and Regeneration after the Cold War” at the Norwegian Nobel Institute:
Is the West in terminal decline? Niall Ferguson argues that, less than 25 years after the end of the Cold War and the apparent triumph of liberal democracy and the free market, the economic and political supremacy of Western Europe and North America is fading rapidly. According to the International Monetary Fund, advanced economies continue to pose a serious risk to global recovery. In the euro area, prolonged stagnation looms large, whilst in the United States excessive fiscal consolidation could derail the recent upturn. As developing economies continue to grow, many advanced economies are battling high unemployment, debt, and income inequality. Niall Ferguson argues that these challenges indicate the deterioration of economic and political institutions. What are the causes of this degeneration and what comes next?
Niall Ferguson is one of the world’s leading historians of the global economy and author of such internationally-acclaimed works as The Ascent of Money, The Pity of War, The Cash Nexus: Money and Power in the Modern World, Empire: The Rise and Demise of the British World Order, Lessons for Global Power, and The War of the World: Twentieth Century Conflict and the Descent of the West. His new book, Civilization: The West and the Rest, is an international bestseller and basis for a multi-part television documentary.
Controversial, expansive, and eloquent, Ferguson has been called “the most talented British historian of his generation”. But the ambitious themes he explores in his work have urgent relevance to the present as well as the past: the costs and benefits of economic globalization; the interface between finance and politics; the lessons to be learned from the British experience of empire; and most recently, the strengths and limitation of American global power.