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Katharina Pistor

Katharina Pistor

Writing for PS since 2000
33 commentaries

Katharina Pistor, Professor of Comparative Law at Columbia Law School, is the author of The Code of Capital: How the Law Creates Wealth and Inequality (Princeton University Press, 2019).

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  1. Elon Musk and the Absolutist Revival
    pistor33-napoleon musk

    Elon Musk and the Absolutist Revival

    Feb 13, 2024 Katharina Pistor laments the modern cult of the CEO, which allows corporate leaders to pick and choose their own laws.

  2. Katharina Pistor on financial risk, wealth creation, digital currencies, and more
    basu50_sasun1990GettyImages_businessmanbooksmoney sasun1990/Getty Images

    Katharina Pistor on financial risk, wealth creation, digital currencies, and more

    Jan 23, 2024 Katharina Pistor highlights the government’s role in perpetuating financial-sector fragility, urges stronger enforcement of legal accountability for political leaders, explains why trading nature derivatives should not be confused with protecting nature, and more.

  3. In AI, Capital Wins Again
    pistor30_Justin SullivanGetty Images_sam altman Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

    In AI, Capital Wins Again

    Nov 28, 2023 Katharina Pistor shows why OpenAI’s efforts to preserve its founding non-profit mission never stood any chance.

  4. How Finance Became the Problem
    pistor29_Selcuk1Getty Images_money Selcuk1/Getty Images

    How Finance Became the Problem

    Oct 5, 2023 Katharina Pistor catalogues the high costs of transforming almost every political challenge into a priceable asset.

  5. Good Governance Is a Bad Idea
    pistor28_Getty Images_ESG Getty Images

    Good Governance Is a Bad Idea

    Aug 9, 2023 Katharina Pistor thinks the obsession with technocratic goal-setting and box-ticking has become a dangerous distraction.

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  1. dunleavycampbell1_ Leon NealGetty Images)_internetr Leon Neal/Getty Images)

    The US Is Jeopardizing the Open Internet

    Natalie Dunleavy Campbell & Stan Adams condemn America’s apparent decision to abandon its role as a champion of a free digital domain.
  2. monga10MUHAMADOU BITTAYEAFP via Getty Images_senegal uni MUHAMADOU BITTAYE/AFP via Getty Images

    How to Finance Higher Education in Africa

    Célestin Monga proposes a mix of several funding streams to improve access to high-quality colleges and universities.
  3. bu1+ NHAC NGUYENAFP via Getty Images_vietnam wind NHAC NGUYEN/AFP via Getty Images

    Catalytic Capital Holds the Key to Southeast Asia’s Green Transition

    Kitty Bu & Stefanie Fairholme highlight the potential role of early-stage funding in advancing the region’s decarbonization efforts.
  4. op_campanella12_BlackJack3DGetty Images_AIbrain BlackJack3D/Getty Images

    Which AI Risks Matter?

    Edoardo Campanella

    To prevent humanity from ever being demoted to the status of gorillas by a highly advanced artificial intelligence, most AI experts agree that we must retain control over the technology. But with developers racing to achieve the next breakthrough and gain market share, that may be easier said than done.

    considers three leading experts’ assessments of the technology’s future capabilities and their implications.
  5. bq eu security Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images

    Europe Must Defend Itself

    Donald Trump – who spent his presidency lambasting NATO – recently suggested that he would encourage Russian aggression against NATO allies that had not met their commitment to spend 2% of GDP on defense. With Trump vying for another term in the White House – and the Ukraine war still raging on the European Union’s doorstep – EU countries can no longer ignore the difficult but essential task of taking charge of their own security.

  6. klee18_Daniel BerehulakGetty Images_shenzhen Daniel Berehulak/Getty Images

    Making the Most of FDI

    Keun Lee considers what it takes to convert foreign investment into growth, development, and technological upgrading.
  7. frankel157_Michael M. SantiagoGetty Images_economy Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

    Explaining Americans’ Pessimism About a Strong Economy

    Jeffrey Frankel considers possible reasons for the disconnect between economic performance and public perceptions.
  8. coyle35_getty_sharing tech iStock / Getty Images Plus

    Sharing the Tech Wealth

    Diane Coyle urges investment in digital public infrastructure to curb the adverse effects of market power.
  9. sauvant9_FABRICE COFFRINIAFP via Getty Images_wto FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images

    The WTO’s FDI Challenge

    Karl P. Sauvant urges the World Trade Organization’s members to adopt the new Investment Facilitation for Development Agreement.

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