Japan’s initial success after the Second World War had a lot to do with the copying of Western technology. The economic miracle of the 1960s, however, rested on Japanese firms’ ever-increasing capability to innovate. The world was to get a taste of this when thousands of spectators visited Tokyo for the 1964 Olympic Games. Kenzo Tange’s Gymnasium provided a central venue of great symbolic power.
All photos by Manuel Oka (www.manueloka.com)
Reinier de Graaf of OMA wrote an article which beautifully builds bridges between architecture and Piketty’s theses on income inequalities. Time to reflect on some of this, almost exactly a year after I wrote my own review of the economist’s tome.
Neelam Cinema (Aditya Prakash), Chandigarh
Cross-posted from the GFI blog: I am back from a month traveling in India, visiting Delhi, Chandigarh, Mumbai, Bangalore and Chennai. It was an opportune moment to assess the first 100 days of the new BJP government under prime minister Modi.
The Secretariat’s South Block in Delhi
Can Mexico transform its economy with the raft of recent reforms? I posted some observations from a research briefing I organised last week on the GFI website, a copy of which can be found after the jump.
Museo de Arte Moderno
Watching Thomas Piketty’s book “Capital in the 21st Century” make waves in this country has been fun and insightful, albeit time-consuming. The controversy the book has caused is telling of the political climate in this country. Perhaps this comes out “best” on Amazon and on Forbes.
I went to an interesting presentation on the state of the Japanese private equity industry at Columbia the other day. Industry veteran Richard Folsom of Advantage Partners spoke about his fund, but it was really the comments of CBS professor Bruce Greenwald that I found interesting.
Seldom does a book create such buzz as Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the 21st Century” and rarely has a book faster been lauded as one of the decade’s defining books on economics. Much of the silence on this blog can be explained by engaging with Piketty’s magnum opus. I wanted to wait before posting anything before I would see the French economist speak at Columbia yesterday. What follows are some notes on the book and on issues beyond.
Thomas Piketty (left), with panelists Suresh Naidu, Victoria de Grazia and Thomas Edsall
I just got back from an interesting paper presentation at Columbia. The authors looked at the impact the long “Lost Decade” had on the labour market and countered the commonly held assumption that dismal economic growth has led to a surge in “bad” jobs.
Night scene – Yamamote Line
A few articles have got me thinking over the past couple of weeks. Ideologically, they have made this year kick off on a slightly “disorienting” foundation. Of particular note have been a long piece on ecology as well as a series on architecture. Yet also polemics on work ethic and class have been pondered long after putting them aside. Herewith a few scribbles.
Man walking in front of Shimizu HQ, the most eco-friendly office in Japan, so they say…
Global Frontiers Inc., the venture I run together with my colleague Sam Baker, now has a website. My friend Robert from Tokyo designed the page while another buddy, Manuel, kindly agreed to us showcasing his photos. The symbolism of “opening doors” to primarily Asian markets works really well I feel.