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Shock Proof: Building Resilient International Systems in the 21st Century

April 23, 2020  | 

The COVID-19 crisis is a blunt reminder of the fragility of some of our most basic human-made systems, including industrial networks, health systems, financial markets, and political systems. The most pressing question for the peoples of the world today is, “What sort of policies and strategies are required to make all such systems more resilient?” To start to find the answers, the New Approaches to Economic Challenges initiative of the OECD and the Open Markets Institute are convening some of the world’s leading political economic thinkers to discuss what went wrong and how we can use the lessons of this crisis to build truly resilient systems that preserve the benefits of international cooperation.

The immediate goal of the conference is to ask: Why did so many cross-border production systems fail during the COVID-19 pandemic? What role does competition policy play in determining the resiliency of industrial structures? How can economists and other systems thinkers help design the industrial and political networks of tomorrow? Both Open Markets and NAEC have long warned of the sorts of collapses that we are now witnessing. Both institutions firmly believe that people have the capacity to shock-proof all vital human-made systems and to establish a far more stable foundation on which to build our societies and our lives.

This roundtable will feature a keynote by Congressman David Cicilline followed by three provocative panel discussions. In addition to Paul Romer, Pascal Lamy, and Rana Foroohar, panelists will also include:

  • Rohit Chopra, FTC Commissioner
  • Paul Tucker, Chair of Systemic Risk Council, former Deputy Governor of the Bank of England
  • Michael Masters, Founder of Masters Capital Management, Chair of Better Markets
  • Sharan Burrow, General Secretary of the International Trade Union Confederation
  • Michael Osterholm, Director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota, author of Deadliest Enemy: Our War Against Killer Germs
  • Cristina Caffarra, Head of European Competition Practice at Charles River Associates
  • Doyne Farmer, Director of the Complexity Economics Program at the Institute for New Economic Thinking at Oxford Martin School
  • Ganesh Sitaraman, Director of the Program on Law and Government at Vanderbilt Law School, author of The Great Democracy
  • Yossi Sheffi, Director of the MIT Center for Transportation and Logistics, author of The Power of Resilience
  • Christopher Gopal, former Vice President of Worldwide Operations at Dell Computer, member Defense Business Board, author of Supercharging Supply Chains

More panelists to be added.

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