Bill Emmott, Former Editor in Chief, The Economist
Kishore Mahbubani, Dean, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy
Chair: Ong Keng Yong, Director, Institute of Policy Studies
Kishore Mahbubani, Dean, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy argues in his latest book, The New Asian Hemisphere: The Irresistible Shift of Global Power to the East that the European Union has become hopelessly incompetent in geopolitical terms, failing to get on good terms with its neighbors, to adopt a stance independent of America, and to find a proper strategy towards Asia. Asia, by contrast, has been far more competent, in his view.
Bill Emmott, former editor of The Economist, from 1993 until March 31st 2006, and now an independent writer, speaker and consultant disagrees. Emmott argues that despite all its flaws the European Union is a geopolitical success story that has helped its neighbors towards stability and prosperity, and whose model of sovereignty pooling and soft power is increasingly influential. Asia, in Emmotts view, does not exist as a geopolitical entity; it is only now being created, but in fits and starts, and riven by divisions. Emmott is also the author of the latest book Rivals: How the Power Struggle Between China, India and Japan Will Shape Our Next Decade.
Mahbubani and Emmott will debate this issue and the wider question of whether Europe has truly come to terms with the
rise of Asia.
ABOUT THE SPEAKERS
Bill Emmott is an independent writer and consultant. He spent 26 years at The Economist, which he joined in 1980, working as a correspondent and editor in Brussels, Tokyo and London, on subjects ranging from politics to finance, economics and business. In 1993 he was appointed Editor in Chief, a post he held for 13 years before stepping down in March 2006. In that period The Economists worldwide circulation more than doubled, from 500,000 copies a week to 1.1m. He has written ten books, including 20:21 Vision—20th century lessons for the 21st century (2003). Seven of his books
have been on Japan, including The Sun Also Sets (1989) and, in Japanese translation only, The Sun Also Rises (2006). His latest book, published by Penguin, Harcourt, Nikkei, Rizzoli and others in April-June 2008, is entitled Rivals—How the Power Struggle between China, India and Japan will Shape our Next Decade. Bill has honorary degrees from Warwick, City and NorthWestern Universities and is an honorary fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford. He is co-chairman, with Roy MacLaren, of the Canada-Europe Roundtable for Business, is a member of Tokyo Universitys Presidents Council and the Swiss Re Chairmans Advisory Panel, and is an adviser to Japan Central Railways; also, he is a non-executive director of Development Consultants International, an Irish overseas aid consultancy, and of the Salzburg Global Seminar. He writes columns for the Guardian in Britain, for Ushio and Voice magazines in Japan and BusinessWorld magazine in India, as well as regular commentaries for the Corriere della Sera in Italy.
Kishore Mahbubani was appointed Dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy on 16 August 2004 after having served 33 years in the Singapore Foreign Service (with postings in Cambodia, Malaysia, Washington DC and twice as Ambassador to the UN, during which he also served as President of the Security Council). He was the Permanent Secretary of the Foreign Ministry from 1993-1998. He is the author of Can Asians Think? published in Singapore, Canada, US, Mexico, India and Peoples Republic of China and of Beyond The Age of Innocence: Rebuilding Trust between America and the World. His new book entitled The New Asian Hemisphere: The Irresistible Shift of Gobal Power to the East was published in New York in
February 2008. He was also listed as one of the top 100 public intellectuals in the world by Foreign Policy and Prospect magazines in September 2005.
29 May 2009
5.15 p.m. 6.30 p.m