By mastering the art of government, the West dominated the world for 400 years. The pandemic shows many Western countries have unlearned how to manage the state capably.
The Covid-19 crisis has shed new light on state failures in the West. Good government is a vital source of global competitive advantage – and, lately, countries like Singapore and South Korea have shown how a competently managed state can boost economic performance and handle acute health crises. With some exceptions, argue Adrian Wooldridge and John Micklethwait in a fascinating book, Western countries have lost their taste for well-run government – with some plunging into big-government nationalism and others being complacent about bureaucratic inertia.
- Can the West rethink the theory and practice of government?
- Will the rise of China push the West to reinvent the state – and yet again make it a competitive advantage?
Join us for a conversation between Adrian Wooldridge and Fredrik Erixon.
Adrian Wooldridge is the political editor of the Economist and writes its weekly Bagehot column. He is the author of several books, including The Fourth Revolution: The Global Race to Reinvent the State (with John Micklethwait) and, most recently, Capitalism in America: A History (with Alan Greenspan).