Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa, Beda Romano

The Short-Term View Conversations About the Big Crash Publication date : October 29, 2009

Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa, an economist, was Italy’s Finance Minister in the government of Romano Prodi, from 2006 to 2008. In 2007, he succeeded Gordon Brown as Chairman of the policy steering committee of the International Monetary and Fund (IMF). He served as Director General for Economic and Financial Affairs at the Commission of European Communities, as Deputy Director General of the Bank of Italy, and as a member of the European Central Bank’s executive board. He holds degrees from the University of Milan and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Beda Romano is a journalist who has worked for many publications, including the French weekly Le Point and the American daily USA Today.

An economist and former politician gives his analysis of the present financial crisis, and asks the following questions: Could the crisis have been anticipated? Who is to blame? Is it a temporary economic depression or a profound crisis? Does it announce the end of capitalism or a transition?
From his standpoint as a leading expert who is also a man of action, Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa argues that we are entering a radically new intellectual cycle. After decades dominated by neo-liberalism, the time has come to change the world’s economy, to impose new rules and new forms of regulation. These are the prerequisites for economic recovery and a fairer system.
In clear, honest terms, Padoa-Schioppa applies his fine intellect, honed by years of decision-making at the highest echelons, to explore the basic conditions to end the crisis: from the international monetary system to credit mechanisms, from European structures to various modes of international cooperation.
Will we finally put an end to short-term economic thinking? Si, possiamo, or yes, we can, says Padoa-Schioppa.

A leading figure in Italian and European politics and economics provides a critical synthesis of the conduct that led to the crash, and suggests paths to be explored to mould new thinking in economics.