Policy brief

The twenty-first century needs a better G20 and a new G7+

In an environment of rapid change in global patterns of trade and wealth creation, a new revamped (but highly representative) grouping should be creat

Publishing date
14 November 2014

Read also Jim O'Neill and Alessio Terzi's survey of the G20 sherpas 'The world is ready for a global economic governance reform, are world leaders?'

During the 2008 financial crisis, the G20 was hastily elevated to ‘global economic steering committee’. In the early stages of the crisis, the G20 was an effective forum for crisis containment. As the crisis has eased, however, the G20 has lost both direction and momentum. Governments and policymakers have felt less need to act in unison and have rather refocused on their national agendas, as is their duty and primary function. However, effective global governance is needed permanently, not just in crisis times. It is desirable to have more representative and effective global governance that, among other things, is equipped to prevent crises rather than just react to them.

In an environment of rapid change in global patterns of trade and wealth creation, a new revamped (but highly representative) grouping should be created within the G20, to provide leadership on key economic policy matters. Euro-area members should give up their individual seats in this G7+, allowing room for China and other large emerging economies. Without euro-area countries taking such a step, it would be impossible to reconcile effectiveness and representation in this new G7+, which would take charge of decision making on global economic imbalances, financial and monetary issues. All existing G20 countries, including individual euro-area countries, would however remain in the G20, which could potentially expand and would remain the prime forum for discussion on all remaining matters at global level.

About the authors

  • Jim O‘Neill

    Jim was a Visiting Research Fellow to Bruegel. He conducted research on aspects of changing global trade, global governance, and measuring better and targeting higher sustainable economic growth.

    Jim worked for Goldman Sachs (GS) from 1995 until April 2013. He joined Goldman in 1995 as a partner, Chief Currency Economist and co-head of Global Economics Research. From 2001 through 2010, he was Chief Economist and head of Economics, Commodities and Strategy Research (ECS). In September 2010, he became Chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management (GSAM).

    Prior to joining GS, Jim was head of research, globally, for Swiss Bank Corporation (SBC) from 1991 to 1995. He joined SBC in 1988. Prior to that, he worked for Bank of America and International Treasury Management, a division of Marine Midland Bank.

    Jim is the creator of the acronym BRICs. He has published much research about BRICs (which has become synonymous with the emergence of Brazil, Russia, India and China) and the broader emerging markets, as the growth opportunities of the future. This autumn, Jim is making a series for BBC Radio 4 about Mexico, Indonesia, Nigeria and Turkey, due to be aired in January 2014.

    Jim is on the board of a number of research organisations including, Itinera, the UK-India Round Table and the UKIBC. He is also Chairman of the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership Advisory Board.

    He is one of the founding trustees of the UK educational charity, SHINE. Jim also serves on the board of ‘Teach for All’ and a number of other charities specialising in education and in September 2013 he became a Non-Executive Director of the UK Government’s Department of Education.

    Previously, Jim served as a Non-Executive Director of Manchester United before it returned to private ownership in 2005.

    In 1978, Jim earned a degree in economics from Sheffield University and in 1982 a PhD from the University of Surrey. He received an Honorary Doctorate from the Institute of Education, University of London, in 2009 for his educational philanthropy.

  • Alessio Terzi

    Alessio Terzi, an Italian citizen, joined Bruegel in October 2013. Prior to this, Alessio was a Research Analyst in the EMU governance division of the European Central Bank. He has also worked for the macroeconomic forecasting unit of DG ECFIN (European Commission), the Scottish Parliament’s Financial Scrutiny Unit, and BMI Research (Fitch group), a country risk and forecasting firm in the City of London, where he was a Europe Analyst.

    He holds a Bachelor's degree in International Economics from Bocconi University and an MPA in European Economic Policy from the London School of Economics, where he specialised in public economics. During his studies, he spent a semester at Dartmouth College (USA). Alessio’s main research interests include structural reforms, competitiveness, EMU governance, and the G20.

    Between 2016-2018, Alessio was a Visiting Fulbright Fellow at the Kennedy School of Government of Harvard University. He completed a PhD in Political Economy at the Hertie School of Governance in Berlin, with a thesis on economic growth, written under the supervision of prof. Henrik Enderlein, Dani Rodrik, and Jean Pisani-Ferry.

    He is fluent in Italian and English, has a good knowledge of French, and an intermediate level of German and Spanish.

    Declaration of interests 2015

    Declaration of interests 2016

    Declaration of interests 2017

Related content

Dataset

China Economic Database

Repository of what we consider to be the most relevant macroeconomic data for China and EU-China relations.

Alessia Amighini, Alicia García-Herrero, Michal Krystyanczuk, Robin Schindowski and Jianwei Xu