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Fortune Favors the Bold

10/23/2003 6:30 PM E25-111
Lester Thurow, HM, Jerome and Dorothy Lemelson Professor of Economics and Management

Description: Economists and geologists have something in common. Geologists can trace the San Andreas Fault in chalk and tell you there's going to be a major earthquake somewhere along that line but they can't say when. Economists, Lester Thurow included, know that the massive trade deficit the U.S. is building ($550 billion as of this year) can't balloon indefinitely, but when the dollar will collapse -- tomorrow or a thousand years from now -- is anybody's guess. And, he warns, don't expect a soft landing. Thurow's talk, which draws both title and subject matter from his new book, describes the promise and hazards emerging from the latest technology-based industrial revolution. While new technologies pay off with enhanced productivity, businesses cut thousands of jobs a month. Globalization may mean foreign markets for American goods, but it also means that Walmart purchases 10% of all of mainland China's exports. And he warns, watch out as more high-paying professional jobs get outsourced to nations like India. Thurow sees a future of vast inequities, within our borders and among countries of the world, unless governments and institutions like the World Bank pursue such innovative policies as embracing biotechnology and educating women.

About the Speaker(s): Lester Thurow has advised presidents and informed the American public on such critical issues as deficit reduction and unemployment for more than 30 years. He has been an economics columnist for many national and international publications including The New York Times, The Boston Globe, Newsweek, and Nikkei Business Japan, and published numerous best-selling books, of which Fortune Favors the Bold (HarperBusiness, 2003) is the latest. Thurow is Coordinator of MIT Asia-Pacific Initiatives, and Chairman of both the Technion Institute of Management and The Lemelson-MIT Awards Program. He was a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford University in 1962, where he received his M.A. and took first class honors in Philosophy, Politics and Economics. In 1964, he received a Ph.D.in Economics from Harvard University.

Host(s): Office of the Provost, MIT Libraries

Tape #: T17666

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MIT World — special events and lectures

MIT World — special events and lectures

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