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Katharina Pistor

Katharina Pistor

Writing for PS since 2000
28 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. How the Public Loses Out When Politicians Cash In
    pistor27_ Kay Nietfeldpicture alliance via Getty Images_shcroder Kay Nietfeld/picture alliance via Getty Images

    How the Public Loses Out When Politicians Cash In

    May 24, 2022 Katharina Pistor sees former German Chancellor Gerhard Schröder’s conflicted interests as symptomatic of a bigger problem.

  2. From Shock Therapy to Putin's War
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    From Shock Therapy to Putin's War

    Feb 28, 2022 Katharina Pistor offers a reminder of the West's own role in smothering Russian democracy in its crib.

  3. The EU Court Punts on the Rule of Law
    pistor25_Arne Immanuel Bänschpicture alliance via Getty Images_europeancourtofjustice Arne Immanuel Bänsch/picture alliance via Getty Images

    The EU Court Punts on the Rule of Law

    Feb 21, 2022 Katharina Pistor worries that the recent ruling against Poland and Hungary sets the stage for more legal hair-splitting.

  4. The Legal Gift that Keeps on Grifting
    pistor24_JUSTIN TALLISAFP via Getty Images_shell Justin Tallis/AFP via Getty Images

    The Legal Gift that Keeps on Grifting

    Dec 15, 2021 Katharina Pistor shows how corporations are awarding shareholders through jurisdictional arbitrage, rather than real returns.

  5. The Pandora Papers and the Threat to Democracy
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    The Pandora Papers and the Threat to Democracy

    Oct 11, 2021 Katharina Pistor considers the implications of new revelations into the old ways that the rich hide their wealth.

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  1. sierakowski91_Omar MarquesGetty Images_ukrainian refugees Omar Marques/Getty Images

    Resentment on the Western Front

    Sławomir Sierakowski thinks the Polish public needs a more open and honest conversation about refugees before resentment spirals.
  2. vives17_ Leon NealGetty Images_ftx Leon Neal/Getty Images

    Crypto’s Well-Worn Path to Crisis

    Xavier Vives writes that, despite the novelty of the assets, the narrative of FTX’s collapse was established long ago.
  3. roubini171_Spencer PlattGetty Images_recession looming Spencer Platt/Getty Images

    The Unavoidable Crash

    Nouriel Roubini anticipates a stagflationary debt crisis, owing to a dangerous combination of inflation and over-borrowing.
  4. nye236_SAUL LOEBAFP via Getty Images_biden xi SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

    War Over Taiwan?

    Joseph S. Nye, Jr. considers whether a deterrence arrangement that has worked for 50 years is still sufficient.
  5. op_livingston1_Anna MoneymakerGetty Images_fed Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

    The Contested Fed

    James Livingston

    By all accounts, central banks – particularly the Fed, because the dollar is still the world’s dominant currency – already act as investment authorities. But their recent bailouts have exacerbated economic inequality, and have done little or nothing to address climate change.

    reviews three books that, each in its own way, reveal a central truth about the world’s leading central bank.
  6. pisaniferry140_Sean GallupGetty Images_cop27 Sean GallupGetty Images

    The Economics of Mainstreaming Climate Action

    Jean Pisani-Ferry & Selma Mahfouz identify the risks and short-term costs associated with the energy transition over the next decade.
  7. haldar15_ Tayfun CoskunAnadolu Agency via Getty Images_twitter Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

    Killing Twitter

    Antara Haldar explains what Elon Musk fundamentally misunderstands about the platform – and about free speech.
  8. emmott41_musk

    The Napoleons of Big Tech

    Bill Emmott

    Recent events in the technology sector suggest that investors and lenders should be demanding a premium to cover the risk that a star entrepreneur will become an egomaniacal dictator. With each business cycle, it seems, old lessons must be relearned.

    sees in the industry’s harsh reckoning this year lessons that apparently can’t be learned often enough.
  9. BP - ftx NurPhoto / Contributor via Getty Images

    The Crypto Emperor’s New Clothes

    The collapse of several crypto platforms this year – including the spectacular crash of the second-largest cryptocurrency exchange, FTX – has raised fundamental questions about the credibility of a digital innovation once hailed as the key to democratizing finance. Has crypto finally been exposed as a scam, or will a new, stronger crypto industry emerge from the current turmoil?

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