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Connectography: Mapping the Global Network Revolution Hardcover – 19 Apr 2016

2.8 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 496 pages
  • Publisher: W&N (19 April 2016)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1474604234
  • ISBN-13: 978-1474604239
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 4.4 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 42,765 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


'Parag Khanna has vision' (Nassim Nicholas Taleb)

'For those who fear that the world is becoming too inward-looking, Connectography is a refreshing, optimistic vision' (The Economist)

'Khanna imagines a near-future in which infrastructural and economic connections supersede traditional geopolitical coordinates as the primary means of navigating our world. He makes a persuasive case: Connectography is as compelling and richly expressive as the ancient maps from which it draws its inspiration' (Sir Martin Sorrell, Founder and CEO, WPP)

'This is probably the most global book ever written. It is intensely specific while remaining broad and wide. Its takeaway is that infrastructure is destiny: follow the supply lines outlined in this book to see where the future flows' (Kevin Kelly, Senior Maverick Wired)

'Reading Connectography is a real adventure. The expert knowledge of Parag Khanna has produced a comprehensive and fascinating book anchored in geography but extending out to every field that connects people around the globe. His deep insight into communications, logistics and the many other globally critical areas is remarkable' (Mark Mobius, Executive Chairman, Templeton Emerging Markets Group)

'From Lagos, Mumbai, Dubai and Singapore to the Amazon, the Himalayas, the Arctic and the Gobi desert steppe, Parag Khanna's latest book provides an invaluable guide to the volatile, confusing worlds of early twenty-first-century geopolitics. A provocative remapping of contemporary capitalism based on planetary mega-infrastructures, inter-continental corridors of connectivity and transnational supply chains rather than traditional political borders' (Neil Brenner, Director, Urban Theory Lab, Harvard University Graduate School of Design)

'To get where you want to go, it helps to have a good map. In Connectography, Parag Khanna surveys the economic, political and technological landscape and lays out the case for why "competitive connectivity" - with cities and supply chains as the vital nodes - is the true arms race of the twenty-first century. This bold reframing is an exciting addition to our ongoing debate about geopolitics and the future of globalization' (Dominic Barton, Global Managing Partner, McKinsey & Company)

'In high style, Parag Khanna reimagines the world through the lens of globally connected supply-chain networks. It is a world still fraught with perils - old and new - but one ever more likely to nurture peace and sustain progress' (John Arquilla, United States Naval Postgraduate School)

'Connectography is ahead of the curve in seeing the battlefield of the future, and the new kind of tug-of-war being waged on it. Khanna's scholarship and foresight are world-class' (Chuck Hagel, former U.S. Secretary of Defense)

'Parag Khanna takes our knowledge of connectivity into virgin territory, providing an entire atlas on how old and new connections are reshaping our physical, social and mental worlds. This is a deep and highly informative reflection on the meaning of a rapidly developing borderless world. Connectography proves why the past is no longer prologue to the future. There's no better guide than Parag Khanna to show us all the possibilities of this new hyper-connected world' (Mathew Burrows, Director, Strategic Foresight Initiative at the Atlantic Council, and former Counselor, U.S. National Intelligence Council)

'Connectography gives the reader an amazing new view of human society, bypassing the time-worn categories and frameworks we usually use. It shows us a view of our world as a living thing that really exists: the flows of people, ideas and materials that constitute our constantly evolving reality. Connectography is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand the future of humanity' (Sandy Pentland, Professor, MIT Media Lab)

'Khanna's insights are at once self-evident and revelatory . . . His seemingly inexhaustible expertise about the global economy is impressive . . . This is a prescient guide to the geopolitics of today and tomorrow' (Publishers Weekly)

'A great feat of reportage' (Niall Ferguson Financial Times on The Second World)

'This is the sort of reporting that newspapers can no longer afford to send correspondents to do ... [Khanna's] book is compelling and exciting' (Telegraph on The Second World)

'The term "sweeping" hardly does justice to the ambition of Indian-born Parag Khanna ... Makes the pulse race' (Economist on How to Run the World)

Book Description

An ever-increasing proliferation of cross-border connectivity, between people, companies, cities and nations, is reshaping the world for ever

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Connectography may well emerge as the most important book since 9/11. It brushes through terror, Islam, the rise of China, the banking collapse and the crises of the news cycle headlines to illustrate the world as it actually is and not as seen by the vested interests of nation states. "We are moving into an era where cities will matter more than states and supply chains will be a more important source of power than militaries," writes Parag Khanna unfolding before us a global picture led by infrastructure building, trade and technology that will drive forward to break down borders and create winners out of those who are the most connected to others. "As the lines that connect us supersede the borders that divide us, functional geography is becoming more important than political geography." With the rise of China and re-emergence of Russia, Francis Fukuyama has now been proved lacking in his post Cold War prediction that liberal democracy is the end of the social evolution of humanity. Since then, we have all been looking around for something else, away from the nihilistic bloodshed of the Middle East and looming threats of Russia and China. Khanna may have given us one. It is not politics but infrastructure. "Connectivity has become the foundation for global society", he says. "We should strive toward such a Pax Urbanica." This is an uplifting and inspirational read, particularly set against the backdrop of the past decade.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is not an academic text examining the arguments for or against a thesis. For those who believe globalisation is still a theory this is not the book for you, and I think explains the poor reviews. There are some attempts made to argue that globalisation and connectivity are a good thing, but as almost all the arguments are for the benefits, the book cannot be described as a critique of the impact of globalisation either.
However if you believe the rise of Asia is pretty much inevitable, or indeed believe it has already happened then you will find plenty to put flesh on the bones of your thinking about the nature of the new world order in this book.
In terms of the detail there isn't much in this book you couldn't find by reading publications such as the economist as well as reading local publications on the internet such as the South China Morning Post and the Singapore Straits Times.
However in the middle ground between the thesis (pretty much taken as a given) and the detail I found plenty of perspectives that I personally had not considered before, despite my interest in the subject.
By way of example: I have read plenty of articles about China's Special Economic Zones. I had considered Special Economic Zones to be transient features of states trying to introduce capitalism without destabilising their political structures, but the book discusses the idea from the US Global Intelligence Council "Global Trends 2030" report that Special Economic Zones may be early examples of a "stateless" world where governments cede increasing self government to commercial city states. Avid readers may have discovered this insight for themselves, but Khanna then suggests an analogy with historical example of "free cities" of the Hanseatic league and Flanders.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
One interesting thought stretched over 400 pages, used to push all the authors ill founded opinions about the world down the reader's throat. There are a few interesting theories in there. And a lot of fiction. All proven by sometimes entertaining "anecdotal evidence" trying to somehow make the reader believe the ideas are empirically founded. And even these examples are often misrepresented and almost always picked in a very unbalanced way. Take his devolution chapter: devolution may or may not be the big trend from now into eternity, but how he presents it as a clear long term trend, when most of human history was about the opposite, is beyond me. Then his examples how devolution creates peace: splitting up Yugoslavia may - after the process was completed be a good example, but how he can claim making Kashmir independant in the 1940s would have created peace is beyond me. It's not like all of Kashmir is united against their overloards, but the population is split and engaged in infighting. Other examples disproving his point are excluded. Like Northern Ireland, where there is no geographical split, but a religous one. And on it goes... Interesting, boring and funny theories with stories that pretend to be prood, but are not
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Format: Hardcover
Khanna's thesis is charming. I can see how it resonates with audiences that consider themselves cosmopolitan, urbane and "globally-minded." Yet, I feel we should interrogate Khanna's thesis on at least two levels. First, the supposed obsolescence of the nation state is predicated on an assumption that people are principally driven by "rational" economic motives or in Khanna's anthropomorphic observation that, "Cities want to be part of this global value chain...That’s how cities think.” But cities don't think. People do. And people do not simply want to be part of economic value chains. People want a sense of identity, history and culture. That's a role that nation states play.

Second, the idea that connectivity between peoples precludes war between states is neither new nor particularly robust. The standard argument is that countries that are interconnected through trade, through cultural exchange etc do not go to war. The history of WWI and WWII refutes the theory. Germany and Britain had decades of trade and cultural exchange (the British royal family was, afterall, German). Yet, they fought the most bloody wars in human history.

One can challenge not only the thesis, but the underlying assumptions that underpin the thesis. His ideas are not simply descriptive of the world "out there". They embody or assume a functionalist, rationalist, futuristic conception of human nature. It seems unlikely that the logic of "connectography" will replace geography a.k.a. identity, place, sense of self anytime in the near future. Khanna's insistence that the forces of connectivity will overwhelm those of division and tribalism are unfounded.
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