The Global Race to Reinvent the State

Our current crisis in government is a radical transition in the history of the nation-state. The West has always led these modern revolutions in government, but in this revolution, the Western government is in danger of being left behind, argue John Micklethwait, editor in chief of The Economist, and Adrian Wooldridge, The Economist’s management editor. They point out that the West’s debt load is unsustainable and that the toxic side effects of rapid developing world growth are adding to the bill. Micklethwait and Wooldridge’s book The Fourth Revolution: The Global Race to Reinvent the State examines the scope of the crisis and points forward to our future. They argue that countries’ success depends on their ability to reinvent the state, and that much of the West—particularly the United States—is failing badly in its task.