The Great Debate UK

from Lawrence Summers:

On inequality

By Lawrence Summers
February 17, 2014

Inequality has emerged as a major economic issue in the United States and beyond.

from The Great Debate:

In the Netherlands, bankers turn to God — by law

By Peter Gumbel
February 12, 2014

 

Lloyd Blankfein, the chief executive officer of Goldman Sachs, once famously said he believed banks were doing “God’s work.” Now, the Netherlands is going one step further: starting later this year, all 90,000 Dutch bankers will have to swear an oath that they’ll do their “utmost to maintain and promote confidence in the financial-services industry. So help me God.”

The Sochi Olympics: Russia’s Double-Curse?

By Guest Contributor
February 6, 2014

Vadislav Zubok–Professor Vladislav Zubok is Head of the Russia in Global Affairs Programme at LSE IDEAS. The opinions expressed are his own.–

from The Great Debate:

Putin’s Occupation Olympics

By Eugene Kontorovich
February 5, 2014

The upcoming Olympic Games in Sochi has naturally led to a critical look at the host country’s human rights record, with particular focus on issues such as the treatment of gays and journalists.

from The Great Debate:

Moscow fiddles, while Kiev burns

By William E. Pomeranz
January 31, 2014

Timing is everything in politics, and this adage could not be truer for the whirlwind now enveloping Russia and Ukraine. Both countries are in the headlines -- Russia for the coming $50 billion Winter Olympics extravaganza, and Ukraine for an economic and political collapse that has left the country on the cusp of revolution.

from The Great Debate:

In France, where unions rule, a challenge from Hollande

By Peter Gumbel
January 29, 2014

In France, taking a person hostage or sequestering them against their will is a crime punishable by up to 20 years in jail. It also happens to be a very effective weapon in French labor disputes. Since 2009, there have been 15 incidents of “boss-napping” and only one resulted in sanctions: 11 postal workers who were fined $2,000 apiece for locking up their managers during a dispute over a change in how the mail is delivered.

Was Nigel Farage right about mothers in the City?

January 24, 2014

And the award for foot in mouth this week goes to… UKIP, again. This time it was leader Nigel Farage, who said that women who take time off to have children are worth less to their employer. He said this to an audience of (presumably) men in the City and rounded it off by saying there is no sexism in financial services and that childless women are more than a match for their male counterparts.

from The Great Debate:

To boost entrepreneurship, France tries to change its attitude toward failure

By Peter Gumbel
January 23, 2014

When entrepreneur-turned-venture capitalist Mark Bivens first moved to Paris in 2001, he regularly introduced himself as someone who had started three software companies in the U.S., two of which had flopped. That’s a badge of honor in Silicon Valley, where failure is viewed as a rite of passage. Not in France. One day, a French colleague took Bivens aside and gave him some friendly advice: if you want to reassure people, stop talking about the companies that didn’t work out. “I soon realized that failure carries a stigma,” Bivens says.

Turkey – avoiding the glare of the IMF

January 17, 2014

The Turkish government has been in the news for all of the wrong reasons in recent weeks. Corruption scandals, accusations of a potential coup and fears that the government is trying to erode the independence of the judiciary have led to widespread protests. Prime Minister Erdogan’s reputation at home has undoubtedly been eroded in recent months; however the bad news could be spreading further afield.

from The Great Debate:

France says ‘Non’ to the digital age

By Peter Gumbel
January 10, 2014

France has kicked off 2014 with an array of skirmishes against Amazon, Google and other U.S. Internet companies, in what is shaping up as a classic battle between comfortable Gallic tradition and disruptive modernity.