The G8 Summit that will take place in the United States May 19-20, 2012 will likely exhibit the same urgency that has attended other recent G8 and G20 meetings. Slow growth, high unemployment, foreign debt concerns, financial disarray, and mounting social unrest mean that the global economy will once again take center stage at the upcoming G8 meeting. Although a global depression may have been averted, recession in Europe and a further global slowdown are likely. Recovery remains uncertain and protracted at best. The situation has left leaders groping for a “desperate optimism,” as Christine Lagarde, managing director of the International Monetary Fund, recently described it. Leaders of developed economies, struggling with their own high levels of sovereign debt, are unlikely to generate new approaches to current problems without the help of others. Emerging economies like China and Brazil - which have remained relatively immune to the ongoing crisis and may hold the key to a more stable future - are themselves put at risk by adverse conditions and are not yet in a position to drive solutions.
The 2012 G8 Summit, along with Mexico City’s G20 Summit that will follow only weeks later in June 2012, are poised to serve as a crucial juncture in the unfolding global economic crisis, one that either begins to chart a new path toward stability, or one that fails to produce the mechanisms needed to avert future turmoil.
In advance of the G8 Summit, The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, in partnership with the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, the Center for Macroeconomics at Northwestern University, the Initiative on Global Markets at the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, the Kellogg School of Management and Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER), the Chinese National School of Development (CCER), the European Bruegel Institute, the Japan Economic Foundation, the Brazilian Fundação Getulio Vargas, and the Mexican Center for Research and Teaching in Economics (CIDE) will host in Chicago a two-day international conference in early May 2012 on “Searching for Strategies to Restore Global Economic Stability and Growth." The conference will bring together senior policy practitioners, business leaders, academics, and thought leaders from select G8 and G20 countries to address key challenges confronting the global political economy including: sustained financial turmoil, renewed recessionary fears, persistent macro-imbalances, continued popular protest over damaged social compacts, and rising political populism. The conference will produce a summary report that will be released around the G8 Summit to help inform conversations at the Summit and the June 2012 G20 meeting to be held in Mexico City.
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Searching for Strategies to Restore Global Economic Stability and Growth, conference report and expert papers here