The assumption that Europe, Japan and the United States could fend off recession at home by increasing exports to BRIC economies has been proved wrong along with the grander notion about the decoupling of emerging markets.
As global trade continues to decrease along with commodity prices, what should be done differently by governments and industry to jump-start global economic growth?
Gloria Macapagal Arroyo
Gloria Macapagal Arroyo is the 14th and current President of the Philippines. A professor of economics, Arroyo entered government in 1987, serving as assistant secretary and undersecretary of the Department of Trade and Industry upon the invitation of President Corazon Aquino.
After serving as a senator from 1992 to 1998, she was elected to the vice presidency under President Joseph Estrada, despite having run on an opposing ticket. After Estrada was accused of corruption, she resigned her cabinet position as Secretary of Social Welfare and Development and joined the growing opposition to the president, who faced impeachment.
Estrada was soon forced from office by what its advocates would ascribe to peaceful street demonstrations of the EDSA Revolution of 2001, but which critics credit to a conspiracy among political and business elites, military top brass and Catholic Church bishop Jaime Cardinal Sin. Arroyo was sworn into the presidency at around noon on January 20, 2001 amidst the EDSA II crowd, hours before Estrada left Malacanang.
She was elected to a full six-year presidential term in the controversial May 2004 Philippine elections, and was sworn in on June 30, 2004.
Angel Gurria is Mexico's former Finance Minister (1999-2000) and Minister of Foreign Affairs (1994-1999) in the Ernesto Zedillo Administration.
He also is the Secretary-General for the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) in Paris.
Yoshihiko Miyauchi is the Chairman and Chief Executive Office of the Orix Corporation in Japan.
In addition to being one of Japan's top corporate leaders, Miyauchi is a strong advocate of regulatory reform and serves as president of the Council for Promoting Regulatory Reform, an advisory board to the prime minister of Japan. In this capacity, he is often referred to as “Mr. Deregulation” and has been described as the free market economy czar of Japan. He serves as a director on the boards of many major corporations including Fuji Xerox, Showa Shell Sekiyu and Sony.
John Monks is the General Secretary of the European Trade Union Confederation (ETUC) in Brussels.He was re-elected as General Secretary in 2007.
Monks has also sat on numerous other bodies, including Acas from 1979 until 1995. In 2000, he agreed to chair the Co-operative Commission, reporting in 2001 with recommendations for the co-operative movement. Since 2008 he is Vice-President of European Movement international.
Joseph E. Stiglitz
Joseph E. Stiglitz was born in Gary, Indiana in 1943. A graduate of Amherst College, he received his PHD from MIT in 1967, became a full professor at Yale in 1970, and in 1979 was awarded the John Bates Clark Award, given biennially by the American Economic Association to the economist under 40 who has made the most significant contribution to the field. He has taught at Princeton, Stanford, MIT and was the Drummond Professor and a fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. He is now University Professor at Columbia University in New York and Chair of Columbia University's Committee on Global Thought. He is also the co-founder and Executive Director of the Initiative for Policy Dialogue at Columbia. In 2001, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in economics for his analyses of markets with asymmetric information, and he was a lead author of the 1995 Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize.
Stiglitz was a member of the Council of Economic Advisers from 1993-95, during the Clinton administration, and served as CEA chairman from 1995-97. He then became Chief Economist and Senior Vice-President of the World Bank from 1997-2000. In 2008 he was asked by the French President Nicolas Sarkozy to chair the Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress, which released its final report in September 2009. In 2009 he was appointed by the President of the United Nations General Assembly as chair of the Commission of Experts on Reform of the International Financial and Monetary System, which also released its report in September 2009.
Stiglitz holds a part-time appointment at the University of Manchester as Chair of the Management Board and Director of Graduate Summer Programs at the Brooks World Poverty Institute. He serves on numerous other boards, including Amherst College's Board of Trustees and Resources for the Future.
Stiglitz helped create a new branch of economics, "The Economics of Information," exploring the consequences of information asymmetries and pioneering such pivotal concepts as adverse selection and moral hazard, which have now become standard tools not only of theorists, but of policy analysts. He has made major contributions to macro-economics and monetary theory, to development economics and trade theory, to public and corporate finance, to the theories of industrial organization and rural organization, and to the theories of welfare economics and of income and wealth distribution. In the 1980s, he helped revive interest in the economics of R&D.
His work has helped explain the circumstances in which markets do not work well, and how selective government intervention can improve their performance.
Recognized around the world as a leading economic educator, he has written textbooks that have been translated into more than a dozen languages. He founded one of the leading economics journals, The Journal of Economic Perspectives. His book Globalization and Its Discontents (W.W. Norton June 2001) has been translated into 35 languages, besides at least two pirated editions, and in the non-pirated editions has sold more than one million copies worldwide. Other recent books include The Roaring Nineties (W.W. Norton); Towards a New Paradigm in Monetary Economics (Cambridge University Press) with Bruce Greenwald; Fair Trade for All (Oxford University Press), with Andrew Charlton; Making Globalization Work, (W.W. Norton and Penguin/ Allen Lane, 2006); and The Three Trillion Dollar War: The True Cost of the Iraq Conflict, (W.W. Norton and Penguin/ Allen Lane, 2008), with Linda Bilmes of Harvard University. His newest book, Freefall: America, Free Markets, and the Sinking of the World Economy, was published in January 2010 by WW Norton and Penguin/ Allen Lane.
Abhisit Vejjajiva is the Prime Minister of Thailand.
Abhisit was born in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, England to a family of Thai physicians. He was educated at Eton and Oxford and successfully ran for MP of Bangkok under the Democrat Party following the 1991 NPKC military coup. He quickly rose through party ranks before failing in a bid to become party leader in 2001. He was appointed party leader after the Democrat Party's overwhelming defeat in the 2005 elections.
Abhisit married Dr Pimpen Sakuntabhai, a former dentist and now a lecturer at the Department of Mathematics at Chulalongkorn University. They have two children.