Niall Ferguson

Senior Fellow

Niall Ferguson is a senior fellow of the Hoover Institution, Stanford, and a senior fellow of the Center for European Studies, Harvard. He is also a visiting professor at Tsinghua University, Beijing, and the Diller-von Furstenberg Family Foundation Distinguished Scholar at the Nitze School of Advanced International Studies in Washington, DC. He has written fourteen books, including The House of Rothschild, Empire, The War of the World, The Ascent of Money, The Great Degeneration, and Kissinger, 1923-1968: The Idealist. His 2011 feature-length film Kissinger won the New York International Film Festival’s prize for best documentary. His PBS series The Ascent of Money won the International Emmy for best documentary. His many prizes and awards include the Benjamin Franklin Prize for Public Service (2010), the Hayek Prize for Lifetime Achievement (2012) and the Ludwig Erhard Prize for Economic Journalism (2013). He writes a weekly column for the London Sunday Times and the Boston Globe.

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Recent Commentary


Cool Your Jets About Paris

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, June 5, 2017

It was as if the world’s oceans rose by a foot in a day. No decision since President Trump’s election has aroused a bigger storm than his decision last week to withdraw from the Paris climate accord. 


The Value Of Trump’s Vow With The Saudis To Battle Extremism

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, May 29, 2017

The problem we face is not complicated. A movement is spreading all over the world that interprets religious texts in the most literal way. This movement encourages young men and women to believe that violence against unbelievers is not merely legitimate but praiseworthy. Its moral code is so warped that it praises as a “soldier” a man who straps a bomb to his own body and detonates it in a concert hall, killing 22 defenseless people, among them an eight-year-old girl.

Analysis and Commentary

King Donald Is Making America Great Britain Again

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, May 22, 2017

To understand the Trump presidency you need to see that he really is making the United States Great Britain again, albeit unwittingly. Forget the Nixon parallels. The right analogy is that Trump is George III. (No, not George as in Bush. George as in King.)


This Isn't Tyranny — It's Trumpery

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, May 15, 2017

Trump isn’t Nixon. He most certainly isn’t Hitler, the comparison implied by Snyder’s best-selling booklet “On Tyranny.’’ He’s Trump. And what we have to contend with is not tyranny but trumpery.


Is Social Democracy Shattered?

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, May 8, 2017

Yet there is another possibility that must be considered. Maybe it is the parties themselves that are in decay, and their useless leaders merely represent a more generalized uselessness. In an important essay in Foreign Affairs, Pierpaolo Barbieri argues that the real story of Western politics since the financial crisis has not been the rise of populism so much as the demise of social democracy: the “implosion of the center left.”

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The Russia Question

by Niall Fergusonvia Hoover Digest
Monday, April 24, 2017

American relations with Moscow have become a geopolitical mess—a mess, very largely, of our own making. 


Are We On The Brink Of A Second Korean War?

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, April 17, 2017

Brinkmanship is back — and the world is back on the brink of war. In the 1950s, the word came to be associated with John Foster Dulles, secretary of state for President Dwight Eisenhower.. But brinkmanship fell into disrepute in the wake of the Berlin and Cuban Missile Crises under Eisenhower’s successor. 


Trump’s Red Line In Syria

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, April 10, 2017

When a president finds his approval rating in the doldrums and Congress slow to enact his domestic agenda, he naturally turns to foreign policy in search of quick wins.


Brexit Isn’t A Divorce, It’s A Schism

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, April 3, 2017

Thank God. Never again will those impossible people on the other side of the English Channel be able to interfere with our affairs. Now we can take back control and sit back and watch their union fall apart.


What Comes Before Jihad

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, March 27, 2017

“All terrorists are politely reminded that this is London and whatever you do to us we will drink tea and jolly well carry on. Thank you.” It was hard not to smile at the signs like this one that appeared in numerous Tube stations in the wake of Khalid Masood’s murderous rampage through Westminster, was it not? How ineffably British. The stiff upper lip. Keep calm and carry on.