Parag Khanna: Leading global strategy advisor, world traveler and best-selling author
Parag Khanna: “Connectivity, not sovereignty, is the organizing principle of the human species.”
Parag Khanna is a leading global strategy advisor, world traveler, and best-selling author. He is Founder & Managing Partner of FutureMap, a data and scenario based strategic advisory firm. Parag’s newest book is The Future is Asian: Commerce, Conflict & Culture in the 21st Century (2019). He is also 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 (2008), followed by How to Run the World: Charting a Course to the Next Renaissance (2011), and concluding with Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization (2016). He is also author of Technocracy in America: Rise of the Info-State (2017) and co-author of Hybrid Reality: Thriving in the Emerging Human-Technology Civilization (2012). His books have been translated into more than twenty languages. In 2008, Parag was named one of Esquire’s “75 Most Influential People of the 21st Century,” and featured in WIRED magazine’s “Smart List.”
Parag Khanna has been an adviser to the US National Intelligence Council’s Global Trends 2030 program. From 2013-2018, he was a Senior Research Fellow in the Centre on Asia and Globalisation at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. From 2006-2015 he was a Senior Research Fellow at the New America Foundation. During 2007, he served in Iraq and Afghanistan as a Senior geopolitical adviser to United States Special Operations Forces. From 2002-5, he was the Global Governance Fellow at the Brookings Institution; from 2000-2002 he worked at the World Economic Forum in Geneva; and from 1999-2000, he was a Research Associate at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.
A widely cited global intellectual, Dr. Parag Khanna provides regular commentaries for international media. He is currently a CNN Global Contributor. His 2008 cover Story for the New York Times Magazine titled “Waving Goodbye to Hegemony” is one of the most globally debated and influential essays since the end of the Cold War. His articles have appeared in major international publications such as the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Washington Post, Harvard Business Review, TIME, Foreign Affairs, Forbes, The Atlantic, Quartz, Foreign Policy, Harper’s, BusinessWeek, The Guardian, The National Interest, McKinsey Quarterly, The American Interest, Stratfor, Esquire, Slate.com, and Die Zeit. He is a contributing editor to WorldPost and serves on the editorial board of Global Policy and as a consultant to the National Geographic series Origins.
Dr. Parag Khanna also appears frequently in media around the world such as CNN, BBC, CNBC, Al Jazeera and other broadcasters. In 2010 he became the first video-blogger for ForeignPolicy.com and from 2010-12 co-authored the Hybrid Reality blog on BigThink. From 2008-9, Parag was the host of “InnerView” on MTV. He spoke at TED in 2016, TED Global 2009 and was a guest host of TED Global 2012. His TED talks have been viewed more than two million times.
Parag Khanna lectures frequently at international conferences and gives tailored briefings to government leaders and corporate executives on global trends and scenarios, systemic risks and technological disruptions, and market entry strategies and economic master planning. He has provided expertise to many Governments including the US, Canada, Brazil, Argentina, UK, Germany, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Norway, Finland, Italy, Estonia, Russia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Oman, Qatar, Japan, China, India, Australia, South Korea, Pakistan, Indonesia, the Philippines, Mongolia, Bhutan, and numerous others. In 2016 he served on the Singapore government’s Committee on the Future Economy. He is currently a senior advisor to Globality and serves on the advisory boards of GeoQuant, Graticule Asset Management Asia (GAMA) and East India Capital Management (EICM), and previously on the Innovation Advisory Board of DBS Bank.
Dr. Parag Khanna holds a PhD in international relations from the London School of Economics, and Bachelors and Masters degrees from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. In 2017 he was awarded a Richard von Weizsaecker fellowship of the Robert Bosch Academy. He has been a Senior Fellow of the Singapore Institute of International Affairs, Visiting Fellow at LSE IDEAS, Senior Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations, Distinguished Visitor at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto, Distinguished Visitor at the American Academy in Berlin, Next Generation Fellow of the American Assembly, Visiting Fellow at the Lee Kwan Yew School of Public Policy, Non-Resident Associate of the Institute for the Study of Diplomacy at Georgetown University, and a Visiting Fellow at the Observer Research Foundation in New Delhi. He has received grants from the United Nations Foundation, Smith Richardson Foundation, and Ford Foundation.
Born in India, Parag Khanna grew up in the United Arab Emirates, New York, and Germany. He is an accomplished adventurer who has traveled to more than 100 countries on all continents. Some of his lengthy journeys include driving from the Baltic Sea through the Balkans and across Turkey and the Caucasus to the Caspian Sea, across the rugged terrain of Tibet and Xinjiang provinces in western China, and ten thousand kilometers from London to Ulaanbaatar in the Mongolia Charity Rally. He has climbed numerous 20,000-foot plus peaks, and trekked in the Alps, Himalayas, and Tien Shan mountain ranges. Parag Khanna is also a competitive tennis player.
Parag Khanna has been honored as a Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum and has served on the WEF’s Global Future Council on Mobility, Global Agenda Council on Geoeconomics, and advisory board of its Future of Urban Development Initiative. He also serves on the board of trustees of the New Cities Foundation, Council of the American Geographical Society, advisory board of Independent Diplomat. He is a former term member of the Council on Foreign Relations, International Institute for Strategic Studies, and a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society. In 2002 he was awarded the OECD Future Leaders Prize. He speaks English, German, Hindi, French, Spanish and basic Arabic.
Topics from Parag Khanna
As much as Brexit should be reversed, if implemented, the UK will need a much more robust strategy around services trade agreements. As Parag Khanna demonstrated in Connectography, the value-added from services far exceeds that from goods and the UK is the second-largest services exporter in the world. On numerous occasions over the past decade he has advised the UK Foreign Office and more recently a number of senior officials on how to maximize the benefits from its new Prosperity Fund aimed at driving growth and economic partnership with emerging markets, especially in Asia. In The Future is Asian, he also documents the inbound Asian investment into the UK from China and other Asian economies and what the UK must do to continue to be the leading European destination for Asian investors.
Even as the Eurozone struggles to find consensus on controversial issues such as migration, pragmatism has prevailed in the core question of Eurozone integrity. As Parag has been categorically stating for a decade, there will be no Grexit, nor will the new Italian government pursue the radical path of exiting the Eurozone for which it has no competence. The German and French governments continue to work with the ECB (whose next leader is to be chosen soon) to develop a mechanism for fiscal coordination and a fair mutualization of Eurozone debt. Khanna expects the political will to coalesce over the course of the coming year — and it will be equally essential for managing the deleveraging of major Eurozone area banks. Importantly, the Eurozone’s overall economic recovery is solid as evidenced by healthy growth, demand for business loans, and prioritizing new trade agreements with Asian countries such as Japan and India. The Future is Asian contains a comprehensive chapter on how Asia can aid Europe’s economic future titled “Why Europe Loves Asia – but not yet Asians.”
Presidents more often inherit economic trends than drive them. The Trump administration initially benefited from the confluence of a stronger labor market driving consumption growth, healthy corporate balance sheets boosting business investment, and tax cuts serving as a fiscal stimulus. As interest rates stabilize, however, the business cycle may struggle to maintain its momentum without further support from the credit cycle. This is because of weak aggregate demand owing to declining median incomes (the US is the only advanced economy whose median income declined since the financial crisis) and high inequality. Congressional gridlock over infrastructure and entitlement reforms – combined with the midterm elections and extreme political polarization – set the course for the budget deficit to reach $1 trillion by 2020. The combination of rising interest rates and debt is eroding America’s sovereign credit, while a strong dollar and reciprocal trade tariffs are hurting US exports. We cannot expect equity markets to continue their strong run unless the private sector further expands investment in new infrastructure, industries, jobs and skills.
China has managed to defy predictions of a hard landing and will likely continue to use its many policy levers to maintain robust economic performance. Corporate (primarily SOE) and municipal debt represent the lion’s share of its ballooning debt – the former is being addressed by restructuring via the SASAC and the latter by policy reforms and raising taxes. In both cases, the PBOC still has more than $3 trillion in reserves to absorb write-downs and fund recapitalization. At the same time, China is responding to trade tariffs and investment restrictions by opening key sectors from industry to finance to greater foreign investment, which continues to attract Western corporates and investors – even at the risk of accelerating the “Made in China 2025” initiative and other efforts to move China up the value chain that he documented in depth in Connectography. Indeed, China continues its rapid shift towards a services-focused economy with ever less export dependence. At the same time, weakening the yuan while increasing the range of partners with which trade is denominated in RMB cushions its economy and others weary of a strong dollar. In The Future is Asian, he makes the case that China should not be understood as entirely distinct from the fast-growing, young and entrepreneurial Asian neighbors to which it is increasingly directing its trade and investment priorities. This provides yet another reason to be relatively optimistic about China’s economic future with the 100th anniversary of the Communist Party around the corner in 2021.
There is no question that globalization is in fact thriving, but it no longer requires Anglo-American leadership, as he argued in this widely circulated article for Politico. Instead, globalization 2.0 will be led by Asia, with China opening many doors for the region’s economies to deepen their internal integration and Europe looking both to further open China while expanding its presence in Asia’s other fast-growing and more open economies. Together, Europe and Asia’s two-way trade across Eurasia far exceeds either’s trade with America – and the gap will accelerate on the back of Belt & Road infrastructure and free trade agreements. As he explains in The Future is Asian, the greater Indian Ocean region now accounts for most global trade growth and is the new epicenter of world trade. Western firms will have to redouble their efforts to compete directly in these high-growth markets if they want to maintain market share against the increasingly confident Chinese, Indian and other Asian companies.
Asia no longer belongs in the inaccurate catch-all category of “emerging markets” with countries such as Argentina. Asian markets are weathering both the trade wars and strong dollar well owing to their strong reserves, flexible exchange rates and manageable US dollar debt exposure. Even as Asia’s corporates need to finance significant US dollar bonds, overall sovereign and corporate credit ratings remain solid and local currency bonds provide a very strong cushion. Furthermore, Asian equities are relatively undervalued and provide attractive opportunities for the many Western institutional investors looking to raise their Asian exposure to generate higher yields. The Future is Asian contains a plethora of new charts and graphics attesting to Asia’s strong demographics, growth rates, trade integration, economic reforms and other indicators that he will be actively presenting.
Parag Khanna: The Future is Asian
Why Asia is the center of the world (again) | Parag Khanna | TEDxGateway
How megacities are changing the map of the world | Parag Khanna
Parag Khanna maps the future of countries
Parag Khanna: Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization | Talks at Google
The Future Is AsianVerlag: Simon & Schuster (February 5, 2019)
Hardcover: 448 pages
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Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global CivilizationRandom House; 1st edition (April 19, 2016)
Hardcover: 496 pages
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Technocracy in America: Rise of the Info-StateVerlag: Parag Khanna (January 10, 2017)
Paperback: 130 pages
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How to Run the World: Charting a Course to the Next RenaissanceVerlag: Random House (January 11, 2011)
Hardcover: 272 pages
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The Second World: Empires and Influence in the New Global OrderVerlag: Random House; 1 edition (March 4, 2008)
Hardcover: 496 pages
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The Second World: How Emerging Powers Are Redefining Global Competition in the Twenty-first CenturyVerlag: Random House Trade Paperbacks; Reprint edition (February 10, 2009)
Paperback: 496 pages
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