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Global Strategy Advisor, World Traveller, & Best-Selling Author


Parag Khanna is a leading global strategy advisor, world traveller, and best-selling author. He is Founder & Managing Partner of FutureMap, a data and scenario based strategic advisory firm.

Parag was named one of Esquire’s “75 Most Influential People of the 21st Century,” and featured in WIRED magazine’s “Smart List.” He holds a Ph.D. from the London School of Economics, and Bachelors and Masters degrees from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He has travelled to nearly 150 countries and is a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum.

Parag's newest book is The Future is Asian: Commerce, Conflict & Culture in the 21st Century. He is the author of a trilogy of books on the future of world order beginning with The Second World: Empires and Influence in the New Global Order., followed by How to Run the World: Charting a Course to the Next Renaissance, and concluding with Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization. He is also the author of Technocracy in America: Rise of the Info-State. and co-author of Hybrid Reality: Thriving in the Emerging Human-Technology Civilization.

Talking Points

The Post-Pandemic World: Global Trends & Scenarios

Like the 14th century Black Death, the coronavirus has caused a profound worldwide loss of life, significant restructuring of trade patterns, major reordering of geopolitical relations, and substantial disruption to our daily lives. What radical changes lie ahead in the post-pandemic world?

The global economy will become much more regional than global. There will be a revival in manufacturing near-shoring to ensure a solid national industrial foundation in areas ranging from electronics to pharmaceuticals, all powered by accelerated robotic automation and 3D printing. A true North American Union including Canada and Mexico may emerge to reinforce a full continental resource base free of dependence on turbulent regions. Europe will gradually add a fiscal and banking union to its existing common currency, and subsidize strategic industries to boost its competitiveness against the US and Asia. Asians have entered into a massive Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) that covers more than one-third of global GDP, but Asians too will seek to diminish their dependency on China, pushing back on its Belt and Road Initiative much as the plague weakened the Mongols’ grip on the medieval Silk Roads. Supply chains will rapidly diversify towards a “make where you sell” model to avoid bottlenecks.

How will geopolitical and market competition play out in this new global scenario? Will decoupling between regions be followed by new areas of mutually beneficial cooperation? Drawing on his deep expertise in geopolitics and geoeconomics captured in his books The Second World and Connectography, his vast knowledge of Asia’s rising weight in the global system embodied in The Future is Asian, and his active consultations with the most important governments and companies, Parag Khanna maps out the future of global capital flows, infrastructure investments, supply chains, industrial policies, accelerating growth sectors, and other major drivers of the next world order.

The Future is Asian: Billions of People, Trillions of Dollars

Even more than before the pandemic, Asia remains the world’s economic growth engine, representing more than half the world’s population and fifty percent of global GDP. China’s decades-long growth boom continues with its post-pandemic recovery and new five-year plan, as well as surging portfolio capital flows into its bond and equity markets. But the next Asian growth wave is also recovering momentum as South and Southeast Asian powerhouses from India to Indonesia attract record capital inflows and become the new epicenter of global supply chains, especially under the framework of the new Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP). Global asset managers are also taking big stakes in the region given its lower valuations and privatization initiatives, while multinationals are expanding their presence to access the burgeoning youth consumer base. Despite economic and political friction, Western companies need far more diversified strategies for Asia’s many unique markets from China and Japan to ASEAN and India.

The decade ahead will also witness an acceleration of Asia going global. The Trans-Pacific Partnership, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership, and Belt and Road Initiative all embody how dozens of countries across Eurasia and the Indian Ocean are knitting themselves closer together through trade, investment, and infrastructure networks that provide vital capital and technology for many developing countries to modernize and serve as the next destinations for Western overseas expansion as well.

Having provided extensive guidance to Asia’s governments and companies in the finance, energy, infrastructure, real estate, and technology sectors, Parag Khanna gives audiences an insider’s view of the new geographies and platforms of growth in the world’s new center of gravity.

The New War for Talent

The coronavirus imposed the strictest lockdown in history, yet all the forces that compel people to uproot themselves are accelerating: labor shortages, political upheaval, economic crises, technological disruption, and climate change. Humanity is voting with their feet: Prepare for a world with billions of people on the move. This applies especially to youth: More than four billion millennials and Gen-Z are willing to go anywhere in search of stability and opportunity. As mankind reaches a demographic plateau, those societies overcoming their xenophobic tendencies and recruiting the next generation of migrants, citizens, entrepreneurs, service workers, and taxpayers will be the winners of tomorrow. Where and how should you invest to get an edge in the new war for talent?

Based on his visionary new book MOVE, Parag Khanna explains which geographies are best prepared for today’s turbulence and what factors are most crucial to attract a new generation of remote workers and mobile professionals. Dr. Khanna also includes the latest insights from FutureMap’s pioneering Climate Oases practice that applies big data models to forecast the cities best adapting to today’s complexity to become the innovation hubs of the future.
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