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Lord Jim O'Neill on 20 years of the BRICs and lessons from China's innovation

Dr Robyn Klingler-Vidra, Associate Dean for Global Engagement, Reader in Entrepreneurship & Sustainability, and an expert on innovation and venture capital at King’s Business School, sits down with Lord Jim O’Neill, the originator of the term ‘BRICs’ and non-Executive Chairman of Northern Gritstone, to reflect on the economic trajectory of the BRICs nations, how China has experienced a “game of two halves” and what the UK can learn from China in its ambition to accelerate the growth of Northern towns and cities.

Top image courtesy of: poppet with a camera and Tim Joki on Flickr, and Canva.

In their conversation, Dr Klingler-Vidra and Lord O’Neill reflect on the global and geopolitical changes of the 20+ years since, as the then Chief Economist of Goldman Sachs, he coined the term ‘BRIC’ nations to refer to the group of Brazil, Russia, India and China as rising economic powers. They discuss China’s success in fostering innovation and its “game of two halves”, including the ways China has changed since 2001.

Looking closer to home and drawing on Lord O’Neill’s experience as one of the initiators of the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ project while serving as the Commercial Secretary to the Treasury, they explore the way that China has invested in infrastructure to build new metropolitan areas and economic engines. Can a similar approach be taken to fostering the revival of what Lord O’Neill calls “MANSHEFFLEEDSPOOL”, the area spanning the major nineteenth century industrial cities of Manchester, Sheffield, Leeds and Liverpool?

In this story

Robyn Klingler-Vidra

Robyn Klingler-Vidra

Reader in Entrepreneurship & Sustainability

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