global systems for a global economy
How can we build a global financial system that is safe if we don’t build it at the global level? We are at a stage in the evolution of our planet that we have to think and work together.
There is huge efficiency and satisfaction in our working together as a field. Worldwide, when you take all the partial answers from individual countries and put them together, we can see what’s universal. And then we can work together to spread those universal insights. Working together is many times more effective than the sum of our individual efforts.
As Iceland’s banking system went into meltdown at the start of the global financial crisis, it came under enormous pressure from the rest of Europe to accept crippling austerity measures that would have burdened its people for generations to come. And yet the tiny island nation stood up to the European Goliath, defiantly opting for democracy even as it stood on the brink of bankruptcy. What can Iceland teach the world about the power of the people and the rule of law?
How can the world cope with this growing amount of debt? Monetary policy has accompanied the debt super-cycle by lowering the cost of refinancing. Today, both nominal and real interest rates are at multi-century lows. But while lower interest rates were previously spurring credit, consumer demand and growth, today, the impact of interest rates on demand and growth is as flimsy as it’s ever been. Put differently, as both corporates, households, banks and governments remain overburdened by the existing stock of debt, the engine of credit creation is still broken.
Ashoka’s Canadian branch was established in 2002 and aims to build a radically new Canada where solutions outrun problems—a country where everyone is a changemaker. Together, we recognize, support, and connect a national network of leading changemakers, amplifying solutions and embedding empathy and changemaking into Canadian society.