Economics & Finance

Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman and the landscape near the planned city of Neom.
 (Foreign Policy illustration/Fayez Nureldine/AFP/Getty Images/NEOM)

Saudi Arabia Is Betting Its Future on a Desert Megacity

Can Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman’s ambitious plans jumpstart social and economic reform, or are they an expensive miscalculation?

The sign and logo of Wanda Group, a Chinese multinational conglomerate corporation and FIFA partner, on Oct. 13, 2016 at FIFA headquarters in Zurich. (Fabrice Coffrini/AFP/Getty Images)

It’s No Accident That China’s Tycoons Are Bad Investors

The first priority for wealthy Chinese has been to move as much money abroad as possible. If Beijing has its way, that won't be an option anymore.

Cars from German manufacturer Volkswagen are pictured in the port of Bremerhaven, nothern Germany, on July 24, 2017.
Daimler, BMW, and VW with its Audi and Porsche subsidiaries were all involved in the talks to agree on technology, suppliers, markets, strategies and polluting emissions, German weekly magazine Der Spiegel reported. / AFP PHOTO / PATRIK STOLLARZ        (Photo credit should read PATRIK STOLLARZ/AFP/Getty Images)

German Car Companies Are Driving the Country Off a Cliff

"Made in Germany" used to mean reliability. Now it means collusion.

Members of a police SWAT team lineup outside the main Olympic Stadium, also known as the Bird's Nest, during security drill rehearsals on July 23, 2008 in Beijing. The 2008 Olympics' security chief has said that Beijing can stage a fun Olympics as well as a safe one, in response to charges that a massive security clampdown was squeezing the joy out of the Games. More than 110,000 troops and police were engaged in security and were joined by hundreds of thousands of volunteers and that millions of Beijing residents had also been roped into the operation. AFP PHOTO/Frederic J. BROWN (Photo credit should read FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP/Getty Images)

Hostage Taking Is China’s Small-Claims Court

Everyone in China — including the police — treats kidnapping as just the price of doing business.

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 22: Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif arrives at the White House October 22, 2015 in Washington, DC. The Prime Minister participated in a bi-lateral meeting with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

The Downfall of Nawaz Sharif and the Triumph of Stupidity

Pakistan’s democracy is stronger with the removal of the prime minister on corruption charges. But the primacy of the armed forces remains intact.

The Google self-driving car maneuvers through the streets of in Washington, DC May 14, 2012. The system on a modified Toyota Prius combines information gathered from Google Street View with artificial intelligence software that combines input from video cameras inside the car, a LIDAR sensor on top of the vehicle, radar sensors on the front of the vehicle and a position sensor attached to one of the rear wheels that helps locate the car's position on the map. As of 2010, Google has tested several vehicles equipped with the system, driving 1,609 kilometres (1,000 mi) without any human intervention, in addition to 225,308 kilometres (140,000 mi) with occasional human intervention. Google expects that the increased accuracy of its automated driving system could help reduce the number of traffic-related injuries and deaths, while using energy and space on roadways more efficiently.  AFP PHOTO/Karen BLEIER        (Photo credit should read KAREN BLEIER/AFP/GettyImages)

Bad Code Is Already a Problem. Soon, Companies Will Be Liable.

Where life and death are at issue, responsibility and liability cannot be far behind.

The Latest

What can we learn from Bin Laden's diary? (Getty Images)

Among the Memes and YouTube Videos, What Do the Bin Laden Files Hold?

The CIA recently released hundreds of thousands of files seized from Osama bin Laden’s compound. What can we learn from them?

Senator Robert Menendez speaks outside federal court after he was indicted on corruption charges on April 2, 2015 in Newark, New Jersey. (Kena Betancur/Getty Images)

Democrats Are Hypocrites on Corruption

Robert Menendez is credibly accused of serious crimes, but his party has never seemed to have a problem with him.

Cambodian police officials patrol during a hearing at the Supreme Court in Phnom Penh on Nov. 16. (Tang Chhin Sothy/AFP/Getty Images)

Cambodia Becomes the World’s Newest One-Party State

With Chinese support, Hun Sen has effectively destroyed all opposition to his autocratic rule.

White House senior advisor Jared Kushner at a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping on Nov. 9 in Beijing, China. (Thomas Peter-Pool/Getty Images)

How Jared Kushner’s Newspaper Became a Favorite Outlet for WikiLeaks Election Hacks

The New York Observer, owned by Trump’s son-in-law, was a friendly outlet for the 2016 Russian hackers.

In the Magazine

In the Magazine

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This Land Is Their Land

Immigration is inevitable. When will the West learn that it promises salvation — not destruction?

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Rescuing Migrants From a Couch in Galicia

How a school administrator in Spain is helping save refugees with little more than fervor and a phone.

On the Edge of Afghanistan

A decimated economy, a resurgent Taliban, and growing tensions with Iran are driving disenchanted Afghans to seek opportunities abroad. And for many it’s their only option.

Highway Through Hell

The human-smuggling route across the Sahara may have been the deadliest on Earth. Then the EU paid Niger’s army to shut it down — and made it even more treacherous.

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Global Thinkers 2015 Issue Cover