Author: Raghuram Rajan – University of Chicago
[R]ajan offers a way to rethink the relationship between the market and civil society and argues for a return to strengthening and empowering local communities as an antidote to growing despair and unrest. Rajan is not a doctrinaire conservative, so his ultimate argument that decision-making has to be devolved to the grass roots or our democracy will continue to wither, is sure to be provocative. But even setting aside its solutions, The Third Pillar is a masterpiece of explication, a book that will be a classic of its kind for its offering of a wise, authoritative and humane explanation of the forces that have wrought such a sea change in our lives.
Few economists span the worlds of policy and scholarship with such distinction as Raghu Rajan, and fewer still have been so consistently right about the wrong turns the world economy has taken. In his latest book, Rajan reminds us of the importance of local communities—the social ties that bind those who live in close geographical proximity. We need to strike a balance not just between state and market, he argues, but also between these two and community. Rajan presents a bold, original vision that significantly advances our contemporary debate on the ills of democracies and moves it onto new terrain.
Dani Rodrik, Harvard University
Author: Eric Monnet – Banque de France
It is common wisdom that central banks in the postwar (1945–1970s) period were passive bureaucracies constrained by fixed-exchange rates and inflationist fiscal policies. This view is mostly retrospective and informed by US and UK experiences. This book tells a different story. Eric Monnet shows that the Banque de France was at the heart of the postwar financial system and economic planning, and contributed to economic growth by both stabilizing inflation and fostering direct lending to priority economic activities. Credit was institutionalized as a social and economic objective. Monetary policy and credit controls were conflated. He then broadens his analysis to other European countries and sheds light on the evolution of central banks and credit policy before the Monetary Union.
How central banks and governments used directed credit to positively influence post-World War II economic recovery and growth – and why similar policies do not work today – is one of the great unsolved mysteries of twentieth-century economic history. In this pathbreaking volume, Eric Monnet uses the French case to shed important new light on the question.’
Barry Eichengreen, University of California, Berkeley
Author: Richard Baldwin – Graduate Institute (Geneva)
Baldwin argues that the globotics upheaval will be countered in the short run by “shelter-ism” – government policies that shelter some service jobs from tele-migrants and thinking computers. In the long run, people will work in more human jobs-activities that require real people to use the uniquely human ability of independent thought-and this will strengthen bonds in local communities. Offering effective strategies such as focusing on the social value of work, The Globotics Upheaval will help people prepare for the oncoming wave of an advanced robotic workforce.
Author: Jerome Roos – LSE
Drawing on in-depth case studies of contemporary debt crises in Mexico, Argentina, and Greece, Why Not Default? paints a disconcerting picture of the ascendancy of global finance. This important book shows how the profound transformation of the capitalist world economy over the past four decades has endowed private and official creditors with unprecedented structural power over heavily indebted borrowers, enabling them to impose painful austerity measures and enforce uninterrupted debt service during times of crisis—with devastating social consequences and far-reaching implications for democracy.
This is a fascinating and timely book! It gives us a whole new perspective on the global debt crises since the 1980s. To understand why countries grind through under duress and the power of finance, we need to understand why struggling borrowers don’t give up. Why do have-less countries continue to borrow despite the massive transfers to have-more countries and investors? This book offers brilliant insights.
Jeremy Adelman, Princeton University