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Sebastian Mallaby’s incisive biography of Alan Greenspan ‘The Man Who Knew’

sebastian-mallaby the man who knewFormer Washington Post columnist and senior fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations, Sebastian Mallaby‘s biography of Alan Greenspan has generated exceptional coverage and reviews since its release on October 11.

The book explores Greenspan’s image as a hero/villain of the global economy and, most importantly, delves into whether Greenspan foresaw the financial crash in 2008 but refused to act.  In a nuanced and thought-provoking read, Mallaby speculates as to whether a different man in the same position could have prevented the economic crisis. The book has been shortlisted for the Financial Times & McKinsey Business Book of the Year Award.


About the book:

Sebastian Mallaby brilliantly shows the subtlety and complexity of Alan Greenspan’s legacy. Full of beautifully rendered high-octane political infighting, hard-hitting dialogue and stories, The Man Who Knew is superbly researched, enormously gripping and the story of the making of modern finance.

“The Man Who Knew” is a tour de force, the story not just of Alan Greenspan’s career but equally of America’s economic triumphs and failures over five decades. This carefully researched and elegantly written book will be essential reading for those who aspire to make policy and for anyone who wants to divine what drives the choices that our leaders make.” – Professor Randall Kroszner, Wall Street Journal

“Mr. Greenspan is a fascinating subject because for so long he was considered a genius, only to later be blamed for the financial crisis. Mr. Mallaby does an exquisite job going beyond these two versions of the Greenspan narrative and taking the reader inside the complicated mind of a man who may have had one of the largest ever influences over our economy.” – Andrew Ross Sorkin, New York Times

“A fascinating and balanced study of arguably the most important figure of the post-war global financial scene.” – Mervyn King, Governor of the Bank of England, 2003–2013



“Sebastian Mallaby’s Biography Shows That Alan Greenspan Foresaw the Housing Crisis. Why Didn’t He Act?” in the Wall Street Journal

“Man in the dock: Was Alan Greenspan to blame for the financial crisis?” in The Economist

“The Greenspan effect: could he have done more to avert crisis?” in the Financial Times

“A Reading List of Tell-Alls, Strategic Plans and Cautionary Tales in Finance” in The New York Times



Sebastian Mallaby – The Man Who Knew: The Life and Times of Alan Greenspan at Politics & Prose bookstore (Oct 17)

Systemic Risk Centre public lecture at London School of Economics (Nov 7)



Sebastian is available for keynotes and events worldwide, simply contact us if you’d like to know more about Sebastian’s topics, books or availability.

Watch >> Sebastian discuss systemic risk with The Economist





















The Economist’s TQ | New materials for the factory of the future – insight from world-leading innovation speaker Paul Markillie

Paul MarkillieA greater understanding of the properties of materials at the smallest scale is transforming manufacturing. This is changing the way things are designed and produced, from light bulbs to batteries, cars and aircraft.

In the Economist’s latest Technology Quarterly (TQ) – a special section focusing on recent trends and developments in science and technology – Paul Markillie, the paper’s innovation editor and world-leading expert on the disruptive impact of new technologies, explores how advances in materials science are leading to a new age of designer materials for bespoke factories.

Key findings include:

  • The days of trial and error in selecting materials for manufacturing are ending. The emergence of a “materials genome” will soon enable engineers to choose materials tailor-made for particular applications.
  • Engineering nanoparticles will allow breakthroughs such as rechargeable batteries that store much more power for laptops, smartphones and electric cars.
  • New materials will require very different production techniques. Some cars are already being made from carbon-fibre composites without a weld or rivet in sight, and components for jet engines are produced by 3D printers.

Never before have manufacturers had such a choice of materials to work with. But to take full advantage of a range of novel properties they will have to learn to do things differently. That will mean reorganising factories, building new supply chains and ensuring that their workforce is up to speed.

Click here to check out the full report.

For more information on how to book Paul Markillie as a speaker for your conference or event, please contact Leo von Bülow-Quirk at or call 0044 (0) 20 7792 8000.

“Has technology rewired our brains?” asks Tom Chatfield, a leading thinker on digital culture

Tom Chatfield speakerHas technology rewired our brains, making us less human as a result? Tom Chatfield is a leading thinker on digital culture, is an enthusiastic downloader of the latest apps, and an early adopter of anything small and shiny that promises to smooth his path through life. But Tom can’t help feeling a little anxious about the hold that new technology has on his life.

Plato felt much the same, concerned that the new-fangled concept of writing might destroy the ability of the Ancient Greeks to memorise vast swathes of human knowledge. Do car sat-navs destroy our innate sense of direction? Do search engines displace our store of general knowledge?

With the help of the Economist’s Digital Editor, Tom Standage and cybernetics expert, Kevin Warwick, Tom looks toward a future when the communication and computing power of our smartphones is inserted directly into our nervous systems. With superfast thought processes and a battery of new senses will we feel upgraded or out of control, superhuman or inhuman?

Click here to listen to their musings. It will be followed up by a long essay on technology, anxiety and what tech means for the mind next week- watch this space.

For more information on how to book Tom Chatfield as a keynote speaker for your conference or event, please contact Leo von Bülow-Quirk at or call 0044 (0) 20 7792 8000.

Dr Tom Chatfield is a British author of six bestselling books, broadcaster and tech philosopher. He has advised many of the world’s leading technology firms, and is currently a Visiting Associate at the Oxford Internet Institute. The latest edition of his book “Netymology: a linguistic celebration of the digital world” was published by Quercus US on 2nd August 2016.

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