Global Strategy Advisor & Senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute
Parag Khanna & Afshin Molavi
About the Speaker
Parag Khanna is a leading global strategy advisor, world traveler, and founder and managing partner of FutureMap, a data and scenario based advisory firm. A widely cited global intellectual, Dr. Khanna is a regular commentator for international media such as CNN, BBC, CNBC, and Al Jazeera. Named one of Esquire’s “75 Most Influential People of the 21st Century,” Parag was featured in WIRED magazine’s “Smart List.”
For his trilogy on the future of the world order, beginning with the bestsellers The Second World: Empires and Influence in the New Global Order and How to Run the World: Charting a Course to the Next Renaissance, and concluding with Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization, Khanna was hailed as “a foreign policy whiz kid” by The New York Times Book Review. His books have been translated into more than twenty languages.
His newest book, The Future is Asian: Commerce, Conflict & Culture in the 21st Century, was called “Dazzling... Thorough and clear, offering abundant food for thought” by the Kirkus Review. Khanna is also the author of Technocracy in America: Rise of the Info-State and a co-author of Hybrid Reality: Thriving in the Emerging Human-Technology Civilization.
Parag frequently lectures at international conferences and gives customized briefings to government leaders and corporate executives. He speaks on global trends, systemic risks and technological disruptions, market entry strategies, and economic master planning. Parag has provided expertise to over 30 governments and has been an advisor to the U.S. National Intelligence Council and the Singapore government's Committee on the Future Economy. He is currently a senior advisor to Globality and serves on the advisory boards of GeoQuant, Graticule Asset Management Asia (GAMA) and East India Capital Management (EICM).
His articles have appeared in numerous major international publications, including the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Washington Post, Harvard Business Review, TIME, Foreign Affairs, Forbes, The Atlantic, Foreign Policy, among others. His 2008 cover story for the New York Times Magazine titled “Waving Goodbye to Hegemony,” is one of the most globally debated and influential essays since the end of the Cold War. Parag is also a contributing editor to WorldPost, a consultant to the National Geographic series Origins, and serves on the editorial board of Global Policy.
He was a Senior Research Fellow in the Centre on Asia and Globalisation at the National University of Singapore and at the New America Foundation. Prior to his work as a senior geopolitical advisor to U.S. Special Operations Forces in Iraq and Afghanistan, Parag was the Global Governance Fellow at the Brookings Institution.
He has worked at the World Economic Forum in Geneva and was a Research Associate at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York. Parag has presented at TED in 2016, TED Global in 2009, and was a guest host of TED Global 2012, with his talks garnering over two million views online. Dr. Khanna holds a PhD in international relations from the London School of Economics, a Bachelor of Science in International Affairs, and a Master of Arts in Security Studies from the School of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He speaks German, Hindi, French, Spanish and basic Arabic.
AFSHIN MOLAVI is a senior fellow at the Foreign Policy Institute of the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies in Washington DC, where he writes broadly on global geopolitical risk and opportunities in a world in transition. He is also co-founder of the emerge85 Lab, an initiative dedicated to exploring the economic, political, and cultural ramifications arising from rapid urbanization, unprecedented connectivity, and growing middle classes in Africa, Asia, and Latin America – home to 85% of the world’s population.
With postings across the Middle East and wide travels across Asia as a risk analyst, Molavi has a unique vantage point on the defining geopolitical and geo-economic issues facing our time from the US-China confrontation to the “rise of the rest,” from the future of energy to the future of globalization. Synthesizing macro and societal trends with local on-the-ground experience, Molavi has written widely on a range of issues from the intersection of whisky and globalization to the evolving geopolitics of the Middle East to the rapid proliferation of South Korea and Turkish pop culture, which he dubbed “Gangnam Style Globalization.”
A former journalist with Reuters, the Washington Post and others, Molavi’s writings over the years have appeared in the Financial Times, the New York Times, Foreign Policy, BloombergView, Newsweek, Businessweek, Journal of Commerce, National Geographic, Institutional Investor, and dozens of academic and specialty publications, and he has been a regular guest on CNN, BBC, Bloomberg and other channels.
Molavi has also served as a senior research fellow at the New America Foundation think tank, where he was a former director of the World Economy Roundtable. Previously, Molavi has also worked as an advisor at the International Finance Corporation, the private sector development arm of the World Bank and at Oxford Analytica, the global advisory firm, and is currently a partner at Future Map, a global consultancy. Molavi is a regular speaker at investment conferences and has taught courses for senior career US government officials from all five branches of the military and beyond.
He is also founder and editor of Emerging World, a Substack newsletter that examines key geopolitical and geo-economic trends shaping our world, and was named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum. Molavi last spoke for the World Affairs Council of Jacksonville at the University of North Florida in 2017.
He is also an avid reader, a “weekend warrior” in basketball and tennis, a long-suffering Washington sports fan, an award-winning documentary film producer, and father of two kids. He lives in Washington DC.