In today’s hyper-connected world, analysis has become a mere commodity. Retrieving it – let alone information – is like drinking from a fire hydrant. For example, Googling “global economic growth" yields 61 million results; “Eurozone deflation”, 1 million; “tensions in south-east Asia”, 2 million, and so on... It should therefore come as no surprise that we get easily lost in this myriad of information and analysis.
In the face of analysis overload, it becomes invaluable to sift, select and frame the issues and opinions that matter. This is why The Monthly Barometer came up with a Weekly Selection of op-eds and articles. Each week, we select just five of them (out of hundreds that are sent to us by our network) that we frame in two or three sentences. These five pieces convey in a succinct and accessible manner the thinking of people whose opinions matter the most in a variety of macro fields: economics, geopolitics, society, environment, technology and psychology. They constitute a “formidable” shortcut to complex analysis by offering insights and snapshots that can be read in just a few minutes and are easy to digest. For those keen to make sense of today’s world, The Weekly Selections are a must-read. They constitute the best antidote to information and analysis overload.
As a new service, The Monthly Barometer is now offering to its subscribers, and a potentially much larger group, a curation of all The Weekly Selections. On any given macro issue, it will be possible to access the best thinking at the tap of key. This service should therefore be of particular interest to researchers and students enabling them as it does to grasp with ease “who said what and when”.
Subscribers of the Monthly Barometer can access curated Weekly Selections as part of their subscription.
Researchers and students who do not wish to subscribe to The Monthly Barometer can access them on a pay-as-you-wish basis. Please pay an amount that corresponds to the value you attach to the product. If you don’t want to pay, remember the following: “If something online is free, you are not the customer – you are the product” (Jonathan Zittrain, George Bemis Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and the Harvard Kennedy School of Government).
Curation of weekly selections – A distillation of the opinions that count!
- REVIEW OF BOOKS
Sheri Berman, "Populism is not fascism, but it could be a harbinger"
Foreign Affairs (metered paywall) - 30 Nov 2016
This is a lesson in perspective! The political scientist refers to the comparison that many commentators draw between the rise of fascism during the 1920s and 1930 and the mounting challenges that right-wing movements pose to political establishments across Europe and North America. In Sheri’s view, although today’s right-wing populists share some similarities with the interwar fascists, the differences are more significant. These comparisons rarely explain how noxious politicians can grow into the type of revolutionary movements capable of fundamentally threatening democracy, as interwar fascism did (reads in 7-10 min).
Published in Weekly selection 11 November 2016
Neville Morley, "Why historians would make bad policy advisers"
AEON Magazine - 2 Nov 2016
This is at least what the Oxford professor in classics and ancient history claims! As a reply to Graham Allison and Niall Ferguson who suggest in a recent article that a presidential council of historical advisers should be established, Morley says that deriving wider principles and laws of human behaviour from the data of the past can be dangerous and misleading. Nuance and ambiguity, the stock-in trade of the historian, are in fact an impediment to decision-making (reads in 6-8 min).
Published in Weekly selection 4 November 2016
Fareed Zakaria, "Populism on the March"
Foreign Affairs (metered paywall) - 1 Nov 2016
Populism is now capturing the public’s attention almost everywhere, but particularly in the West. In this article that reads in less than 15 min Fareed provides a crash course about this rising and troubling phenomenon: what is it? What is its agenda? Why is it rising so fast at this particular juncture and in the West? And so on. He concludes “optimistically” by highlighting that the generational divide about the most divisive issue (immigration: young people are less anxious about it) might allow populism to wane.
Published in Weekly selection 21 October 2016
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