The #revolution comes by hashtag

Why does the advent of a major new media technology so often coincide with political upheaval or even revolution? To name a few examples: the broadcast radio and the rise of Adolf Hitler; the cassette tape and the Iranian Revolution; the fax machine and the fall of...

Political risk has come home, and we must combat it

The past decade has upended my profession almost entirely. I work in political risk, and my job is to advise companies how to manage political and economic instability. A coup in Turkey, sanctions against Russia, unrest in Venezuela, debt default in Argentina – such...

Beware falling objects

Sam explains that shifts in the world economy cause companies and countries to lose their grip. (Sorry about the low talking: the day before I had given five hours of back-to-back media interviews to promote the Dutch edition of my book, and managed to lose my...

Two decades of geopolitical analysis

Updated January 2019 I’ve been employed to analyze geopolitics and the world economy for about twenty years now, which means, alarmingly, I’ve got a track record. (Most of my publicly-available articles are now posted on this blog.) What did I get wrong, and what did...

Can Russia change direction?

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and I go way back. In the late 1990s, as a young political risk analyst, I traveled down to Houston to talk to one of the oil majors about a large investment they were planning to make in Venezuela. “Venezuela is risky,” I confidently...