Niall Ferguson

Milbank Family Senior Fellow

Niall Ferguson, MA, D.Phil., is the Milbank Family Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and a senior fellow of the Center for European Studies, Harvard, where he served for twelve years as the Laurence A. Tisch Professor of History. 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 is the author of fifteen books, most recently The Square and the Tower. His previous book, Kissinger, 1923-1968: The Idealist, won the Council on Foreign Relations Arthur Ross Prize. He is an award-making filmmaker, too, having won an international Emmy for his PBS series The Ascent of Money. His many other prizes 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). In addition to writing a weekly column for the Sunday Times (London) and the Boston Globe, he is the founder and managing director of Greenmantle LLC, an advisory firm. He also serves on the board of Affiliated Managers Group. His new book, The Square and the Tower, in published in the U.S. in January.

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Recent Commentary

Analysis and Commentary

12 Rules For Summer, Inspired By Jordan Peterson

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, July 2, 2018

If Germany’s footballers have been the biggest losers of the year to date, then the Canadian psychology professor Jordan Peterson has been among the biggest winners. His book “12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos” — only the second he has ever published — has sold more than a million copies. His YouTube channel has 1.26 million followers.


Empathy, But Also Realism, Are Necessary In Facing Immigration

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, June 25, 2018

I am an immigrant — a legal one. Over a period of 16 years, I’ve gone through a succession of work visas, acquired a green card, married an American citizen (herself an immigrant), passed the citizenship test, and in just 17 days will take the naturalization oath, accompanied by my wife and our two American-born sons.


Immigrant Overload, Not Brexit, Heralds The End Of The European Union

by Niall Fergusonvia South China Morning Post
Monday, June 18, 2018

It is rather hard to imagine a similar play being written about the European Union in the early 21st century. The influx of migrants would have precisely the opposite effect. Far from leading to fusion, Europe's migration crisis is leading to fission.


A Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad President Builds An Empire

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, June 11, 2018

To most highly educated people I know, President Trump is a Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad president. For two years, the people with at least two university degrees (PALTUDs) have been gnashing their teeth about Trump’s every utterance and move. To the foreign policy experts, he is a bull in a china shop, trampling the “rules-based international order” underfoot.

Analysis and Commentary

Why I Called On Conservative Students In A Free Speech Fight

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, June 4, 2018

My Uncle Ian enjoyed asking his younger brother when that wastrel Niall would leave college and get a real job. The implication was that, by becoming an academic, I had essentially failed to grow up. I sometimes think Uncle Ian was right.


Face It: Trump Has Been Right About Iran And North Korea

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, May 14, 2018

To members of Washington’s foreign policy establishment, regardless of party affiliation, President Trump’s decision to exit one nuclear deal (with Iran) only to enter another nuclear deal (with North Korea) is beyond baffling.

Analysis and Commentary

An Ancient Trap Awaits China And US

by Niall Fergusonvia The Boston Globe
Monday, May 7, 2018

A hundred years ago, World War I was entering its final phase. No one in either Berlin or London had set out to expend so vast a quantity of blood and treasure on four years of industrialized slaughter. As I argued 20 years ago in “The Pity of War,” World War I was perhaps the greatest error of modern history.


Trump And The ‘Chimerica’ Crisis

by Niall Ferguson, Xiang Xuvia Wall Street Journal
Sunday, May 6, 2018

The countries’ divergence began in 2015, as Beijing took defensive steps against financial risk.

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Make Chimerica Great Again

by Niall Ferguson, Xiang Xuvia Economics Working Papers
Thursday, May 3, 2018

Economics Working Paper 18105


Trump Is Losing At Home But Winning Abroad

by Niall Fergusonvia Boston Globe
Monday, April 30, 2018

Some teams — generally the ones I support—tend to win at home and lose away. The same is true of some American presidents. Lyndon Johnson’s most enduring victories were legislative (civil rights and the Great Society), yet his presidency was destroyed abroad, in Vietnam.