Late last week I finished Kishore Mahbubani's latest book The New Asian Hemisphere:The Irresistible Shift of Global Power to the East. This is an excellent book and by far one of the better books I have read this year. Mahbubani, the dean and Professor in the Practice of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, looks at the economic and political rise of Asia as various nations in this region incorporate the "best practices" of the West-free market capitalism, political pragmatism, meritocracy, rule of law and scientific innovation. With domestic agendas that promote economic development as well as political and social stability, nations such as China, Taiwan, Singapore, South Korea, and now India are slowly coming into their respective owns and challenging the dominance of Europe and North America. The eventual result is return to an economically and politically vibrant Asia of the past, before it was eclipsed by the West at the start of the 19th century.
Except for the bit on international trade tariffs in one of the early chapters, Mahbubani's book is well- written and incredibly readable. More importantly, his non-western perspective on the subject matter provides the reader with a fresh and insightful explanations.
If you end up reading KM's book, follow-up it with When Asian Was the World by Stewart Gordon and Fareed Zakaria's The Future of Freedom:Illiberal Democracy at Home and Abroad.