Through public talks, workshops and cultural events, CGT connects leaders from government, business and civil society to discuss current issues with our academic community. Topics span the fields of economics and political science, and encompass the countries in and around the Pacific region.

To sign up for future events, please contact: Lisa Lee, Programs Representative, GPS

Upcoming Events

There are no events scheduled at this time.


"Visions of Ukraine With Slava Vakarchuk"
Feb. 20, 2018
Pacific Leadership Fellow Sviatoslav (Slava) Vakarchuk is a Ukrainian civic activist, musician and the lead vocalist and founder of the band Okean Elzy. He spoke candidly on the domestic and geopolitical challenges facing Ukraine.

"Trade in the Americas: Its Importance, Challenges and Future"
Feb. 13, 2018
Dean of INCAE Business School of Costa Rica and Pacific Leadership Fellow Alberto Trejos presented a public talk discussing the value of trade among partners in the Western Hemisphere. Analyzing today's political climate, he described current challenges and proposed a course for future economic engagement.

"Curbing Inequality"
Jan. 24, 2018
What is the case for curbing income inequality in the U.S. and other nations? How would doing so affect economic growth around the world? Do we have the policy and business tools to address inequality? Eduardo Porter, economic scene columnist at The New York Times, discussed the power and limits of redistribution and assess other tools to mitigate inequality in market incomes.

"Mexico’s 2018 Presidential Elections: Questions to be Answered"
Jan. 18, 2018
Given the recent changes in the U.S.-Mexico binational relationship under President Trump, many new uncertainties have emerged. CGT Pacific Leadership Fellow and Harvard University Professor Jorge Dominguez discussed the extraordinary number of offices on next year’s ballot and how the coming elections will be unique due to a number of unprecedented factors: independent candidates, Mexicans voting abroad and reelection.

"U.S.-Cuba Ties: A Thaw, Revisited"
Jan. 17, 2018
In 2014, the U.S. announced that it would end its policy of hostility and look to engage Cuba. With the change in U.S. administrations in 2016, this optimism turned to pessimism as President Trump threatened to roll back the Obama administration rapprochement. Ultimately, the Trump administration's policies reinstate restrictions on Americans traveling to Cuba and U.S. business dealings with the military-run conglomerate. These changes take place against a backdrop of a nation preparing for a successor to President Raul Castro in 2018. This panel discussion looked at the recent developments and new constraints for the future relationship between the two countries.


 "ASEAN: Opportunity and Risk"
Oct. 30, 2017
President of the Thailand Development Research Institute and CGT PLF Somkiat Tangkitvanich shared his views on how Southeast Asian countries will continue to accelerate economic growth in the current global economic and political climate. He discussed how countries in the region are working to accomplish the goals laid out in ASEAN Vision 2020.

"Brazil’s Future as an Energy Superpower"
May 31, 2017
A lively discussion on Brazil’s energy future was held, followed by a concert by Sonic Impact — a global ensemble featuring musicians from China, Korea, Japan and U.S. In this conversation, Mauricio Tolmasquim, professor at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro and GPS Professor David Victor discussed where Brazil stands today, what the country’s energy future may look like, and what role Brazil will play globally in tackling energy challenges such as limiting emissions that cause global warming.

"Failure to Adjust: How Americans Got Left Behind in the Global Economy"
May 11, 2017
In his newly released book "Failure to Adjust: How Americans Got Left Behind in the Global Economy,” Council on Foreign Relations Bernard L. Schwartz Senior Fellow Edward Alden explained why the political consensus in support of trade liberalization has collapsed, and how to correct the course. Edward Alden explained more and talks about his newly released book with GPS Acting Dean Gordon Hanson, followed by a short question and answer portion and reception.

"San Diego Global Forum: Europe Between Brexit and the Migration Crisis"
April 12, 2017
Former Prime Minister of Italy Enrico Letta, and current dean of the Paris School of International Affairs at Sciences Po, shared his views on the changing priorities of the European Union with regard to the migration crisis and its shift toward foreign policy. 

"Maintaining an Independent Judiciary in Face of Political Challenges"
March 8, 2017
Former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Pakistan Tassaduq Jillani shared his views on how the judicial system in Pakistan has established its independence from the other branches of government. Following his presentation, the Honorable M. Margaret McKeown of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit provided a comparative perspective and discuss the current challenges facing the U.S. courts.

"Remote Sensing Analysis at Scale with Google Earth Engine"
Feb. 28, 2017
In this talk, Nick Clinton, a Developer Advocate at Google Earth Engine, discussed new possibilities for geospatial analysis at scale and how the research community can use Google Earth Engine as a tool for planetary-scale cloud-based analysis.

"San Diego Global Forum: Japan-U.S. Relations Going Forward"
Feb. 15, 2017
Former Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of the Environment in Japan, the Honorable Professor Yoriko Kawaguchi  shared her views on Japanese-U.S. diplomatic relations with regard to the economy, the environment, and geopolitics and Asia going forward. Following her presentation, Professor Ulrike Schaede led a conversation on how these matters affect global trade and San Diego.


"New Insights from the Brain Mapping Project in Japan"
Nov. 16, 2016
Professor Hideyuki Okano, dean of Keio University School of Medicine and Dr. David Brenner, vice chancellor for Health Sciences and dean of the School of Medicine at UC San Diego spoke on “New Insights from the Brain Mapping Project in Japan: Modeling Human Diseases with iPS cells and Transgenic Non-Human Primates.”

“China’s Governance in Transition"
Sokwanlok Distinguished Lecture
Oct. 10, 2016
In the second Sokwanlok Distinguished Lecture on China, YU Keping, a renowned scholar and advocate of reform in China and PLF addressed the great changes in governance since the economic reform. He traced the principal lines of governance reform in China since the 18th Party Congress and assessed the main challenges going forward.

"Biomedical Research: Lessons from Global Health"
Oct. 5, 2016
Sir Tadataka Yamada, the former director of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Global Health Program, discussed key global health issues and current trends of biomedical research and its impact.

"Thinking Locally: An Alternative Perspective of Public Security in Mexico"
May 17, 2016
Mexico needs a cutting-edge generation of security policies driven by a “local” rationale, comprising accurate information, evidence-based diagnostics and targeted to design territorially delimited policy interventions. Edna Jaime, Director General of México Evalúa, elaborated on this topic during her talk, which was followed by a discussion moderated by GPS Professor Craig McIntosh.

"The Whack-a-mole Problem: Game-changing Organizations for Game-changing Solutions"
May 12, 2016
We are engaged in a growing list of "wars" — against crime, terrorism, drugs, disease, climate change, etc. — where the premise is the need for total victory, but the reality looks more like an open-ended struggle.  One way or the other, however, we clearly need not only game-changing solutions, but game-changing forms of organization. In this talk, Leon Fuerth, founder and director, The Project on Forward Engagement explored and expanded on this challenge.

"Asian Internet Companies and the Global IT Industry Dynamics"
A Conversation between Eric Gan and Peter Cowhey
May 4, 2016
Asian IT and Internet firms, as well as Internet-based consumer-oriented services, now dwarf the U.S. market. This has created a new competitive dynamic in the global IT industry, and its associated providers, producers, and startup activities in the software, shopping, games, social media and other industries. Meanwhile, regulatory restrictions as well as privacy concerns loom large. How is this industry shaping up, and what do we need to know to understand its dynamics?

"Do Bad Times Make Good Economic Policy? Managing Indonesia's Economy in a Globalized World"
April 6, 2016
This presentation examined internal debates regarding the political economy of managing Indonesia's economy in a difficult global context, as well as their relevance for other countries facing similar challenges.

San Diego Global Forum: "What Does NAFTA Have to Teach Us about the Trans-Pacific Partnership?"
March 30, 2016
In this lecture, Pacific Leadership Fellow Ortiz-Mena discussed the lessons that NAFTA holds for the implementation of TPP. Recognizing that trade agreements generate both winners and losers, he addressed how government, business and civil society can work together to maximize the gains and minimize the losses from expanding trade.

"Geospatial Big Data: Using Google Earth Engine for Data Science and Analysis"
Feb. 24, 2016
Satellite imagery is the next frontier in big data. As new generations of satellites make high-resolution images of the planet available over ever shorter time intervals, researchers will be able to study changes in human activity and the natural environment at scale and in near real time. CGT and the Big Pixel Initiative at UC San Diego hosted Nick Clinton, Ph.D., developer advocate at Google Earth Engine.

"Lifting Iranian Nuclear Sanctions"
Feb. 11, 2016
Lifting sanctions are expected to create huge impacts on the Iranian and regional economy, as well as raise important questions. For investors, what conditions, risks and opportunities will they find? And for Iran’s leadership, what political and economic challenges will occur as they pursue new avenues for growth and foreign investment?


“Singapore’s Emerging Role as Asia’s Innovation Hub”
Nov. 4, 2015
Presenter: Pacific Leadership Fellow Poh Kam Wong, Professor and Director of the Entrepreneurship Centre, National University of Singapore; Discussant: Stephan Haggard, Professor, GPS
In this talk, Dr. Wong examined the recent policy initiatives by the Singaporean government to enhance the city’s role as a leading innovation hub in a rapidly changing Asia, and discussed the need for policies aimed at fostering Singapore’s indigenous innovation capabilities and an entrepreneurship support ecosystem.

Symposium on “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” and the UC San Diego Helen Edison Lecture Series presents Thomas Piketty
Oct. 22, 2015
What drives wealth and inequality? Attendees met Thomas Piketty, author of the best-selling book “Capital in the Twenty-First Century,” and the researchers that worked with him in producing this widely discussed text, translated around the world.

"Japanese Business Strategies under Abenomics"
Oct. 7, 2015
Presenter: Pacific Leadership Fellow Reiko Akiike, Partner & Managing Director, Boston Consulting Group; Discussant: Ulrike Schaede, Professor, GPS
"Abenomics” – a new policy regime under Prime Minister Abe – aims to revive the Japanese economy by addressing macroeconomic challenges and pushing Japanese companies to a new level of global competitiveness. Even as some observers remain critical, Japan has in fact introduced a large number of measures that change the incentives and pressures faced by Japanese CEOs. How have they responded? What is happening in the business strategy realm in Japan as of 2015, and what are the truly important developments that should not be overlooked?

"New Approaches for the Promotion of Innovation, Science and Technology: Bridging Japan and San Diego"
May 19, 2015
This one-day conference brings many high-ranking guests from Japan and San Diego to discuss universities and entrepreneurship, science policy, commercialization in the IoT and biotech industries, and the current business climate in Japan. Download the Agenda and Conference Participants’ Bios

“Japan and San Diego: An Evening of Art and Science”
Speaker: Dr. Hiroshi Fujiwara, founder and president of Tokyo-based firm BroadBand Tower (BBTower)
Pianist: Rutsuko Yamagishi
May 18, 2015
We celebrated our new initiative to connect San Diego with Japan through a variety of business-related activities focusing on the Internet of Things (IoT), biotech and wireless health industries.

"Asian Economics in 2015: Prospect, Opportunities and Challenges"
Speaker: Wei Shang-Jin, chief economist of the Asian Development Bank and professor at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business
April 14, 2015
Cosponsored by the 21st Century China Program.

“The Global IT Industry and Entrepreneurship: Where Did We Come From and Where Are We Headed?”
A Conversation between Sachio Semmoto and Peter Cowhey
Speakers: Sachio Semmoto, founder, former chair and CEO, eAccess Ltd/EMOBILE Ltd; with Peter Cowhey, dean, GPS
April 6, 2015
The next horizon industry is the “Internet of Things" (IoT) — high-valued products embedded with electronics, software and new connectivity sensors — which has put companies such as Nest and Fitbit on the radar. From wireless health to automobiles, the IoT will profoundly change how businesses and consumers interact.

“China's Incursion into Latin America: Myths and Realities”
Speaker: Pacific Leadership Fellow Jorge Guajardo, Former Mexican ambassador to China
Feb. 19, 2015
Ambassador Jorge Guajardo talked about the myths and realities of this new Chinese presence in the region using his six years of experience as the ambassador to China to illustrate what is real and what is a misconceived perception in the West of the role China plays in Latin America.

"The Internet with Chinese Characteristics: How Internet Entrepreneurship is Changing China”
Speaker: James Ding, managing director, GSR Ventures
Feb. 11, 2015
Pacific Leadership Fellow James Ding’s talk explored how the Internet developed in China, and how it will further disrupt all sectors of the economy and continue to foster entrepreneurship.

"Democracy and Cultural Expression: Confronting Modernization in the Philippines"
Speaker: Pacific Leadership Fellow Jose Dalisay, professor and novelist, University of Philippines
Jan. 28, 2015
Alternately hailed as a beacon of democracy in Southeast Asia and yet also seen as a place of corruption and human rights abuses, the Philippines continues to be an often-baffling cradle of contradictions. Jose Dalisay explored how culture mediates this divide and offers reflection, relief and hope to the otherwise disempowered.

“The Economics of Public-Private Partnerships”
Speaker: Eduardo Engel, University of Chile professor of economics
 Jan. 22, 2015
The financing of public infrastructure – including roads, bridges, railways, ports and airports – is one of the most vexing economic challenges of the 21st century. Eduardo Engel, a widely recognized authority on economic policy, evaluated when PPPs are the optimal choice for financing infrastructure facilities and how they should be designed and managed.


“Defining Mexico’s Role in the Global Economy”
Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014
Speakers: Arturo Sarukhan, former Mexican Ambassador to the U.S. with Gordon Hanson, acting dean and professor of economics, GPS
Twenty years after the signing of NAFTA, Mexico is now Latin America’s second largest economy. However, economic growth in Mexico remains sluggish and there is continued debate on the extent to which the agreement has helped the country integrate into the global economy. Will President Pena Nieto’s ambitious package of reforms in energy, telecommunications, security and education put Mexico on the path to prosperity? Will these reforms increase Mexico’s stature in the global marketplace? EmPac Director Gordon Hanson joined Ambassador Arturo Sarukhan in a lively discussion to help answer these questions and more.

“Creating an Environment for Innovative Research and Industry Growth”
Thursday, Oct. 30, 2014
A U.S.-Japan Comparison of Market Dynamics and Public Policies in the Medical Sector
Speakers: Kan Suzuki, former politician, Democratic Party of Japan with Greg McKee, CEO of CONNECT
One of Japan's biggest current challenges is the transition to a dynamic market for innovation and entrepreneurship, and the medical industry is a prime example of this transition. Given the industry's fast pace of breakthrough innovation and new market developments — such as in regenerative medicine — the formulation of new policies is particularly difficult.

“UC San Diego and the Local Ecosystem: Insights from Wireless and Biotech”
Thursday, May 15, 2014
Sponsored by: UC San Diego Extension, CONNECT, UC San Diego Library, and EmPac
UC San Diego has played a central role in the development of the San Diego high-technology economy in both the wireless and biotechnology industries. Dean Mary Walshok (UC San Diego) and Professor Steven Casper (Keck Graduate Institute) will present results from their chapters on UC San Diego in the forthcoming Stanford University Press book “Public Universities and Regional Growth: Insights from the University of California” edited by Martin Kenney (UC Davis) and David Mowery (UC Berkeley).

"Green Economy in China: Actions, Effects and Challenges"
May 14, 2014
Speaker: Xia Guang, director general of the Policy Research Center for Environment and Economy, China Ministry of Environmental Protection
After three decades of rapid economic growth with unchecked environmental pollution, the Chinese government has recently started to promote “green economy" to achieve sustainable development. Dr. Xia's talk discussed the policy instruments and obstacles on developing a green economy. Cosponsored by the 21st Century China Program and International Affairs Group.

“Can e-payments fix India's social safety net?”
A PDEL Research Innovations Workshop
May 7, 2014
Karthik Muralidharan is an assistant professor of economics at UC San Diego, where he has been on the faculty since 2008. Paul Niehaus is also an assistant professor at UC San Diego, as well as faculty research fellow at the National Bureau of Economic Research, junior affiliate at the Bureau for Research and Economic Analysis of Development, affiliate of the Jameel Poverty Action Lab and affiliate at the Center for Effective Global Action. Sponsored by the Policy Design and Evaluation Lab

"U.S. Leadership in the 21st Century: The Human Rights Viewpoint"
April 21, 2014
Speaker: Carroll Bogert, Deputy Executive Director, Human Rights Watch
UC San Diego’s International Affairs Group presented Carroll Bogert, deputy executive director of Human Rights Watch, for a discussion on whether rising powers of the global south will incorporate human rights into their foreign policies and whether China will remain a dissenting voice on human rights. This event was co-sponsored by Center on Emerging and Pacific Economies, 21st Century China Program and San Diego World Affairs Council.

“The Emerging Export Engine: Small and Mid-Size Enterprises"
April 16, 2014
Speaker: Kati Suominen, Founder and CEO, Nextrade Group LLC
This talk discussed the role of SMEs in international trade in Latin America and the Caribbean as well as other parts of the world, presenting policy recommendations on ways to unlock this export engine.

“Creating New Connected Economies: How ICT and Mobile Technology are Rapidly Changing Emerging Economies”
April 16, 2014
Speakers: Chris Locke, Founder, Caribou Digital and former Managing Director of GSMA Mobile for Development; with Craig McIntosh, Professor of Economics, GPS, UC San Diego
The conversation was based on how emerging economies benefit from leapfrogging to a 21st century technology industry model and the opportunities and challenges this brings to governments and policy makers.

“Night on Earth: Spatiotemporal Observations of Anthropogenic Processes from Night Lights”
April 2, 2014
Speaker: Christopher Small, geophysicist at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University
Small's current research interests focus on quantifying the spatiotemporal changes of Earth's surface and understanding the causes and consequences of these changes.

"Global Manufacturing and Japan's Energy Challenges"
March 11, 2014
Panelists: Hideichi Okada, former Vice Minister for International Affairs, Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI); Jeffrey Rector, Energy Project Finance attorney, Sheppard Mullin Richter and Hampton LLP and president of the IR/PS Alumni Association; and Ulrike Schaede, Professor of Japanese Business, GPS, UC San Diego

Much of the world's manufactured goods are produced in Asia, and Japan is one of the region's leading players. Japanese companies provide leading products to consumers as well as critical-input parts and materials to the global supply chain anchored in the region. But can Japan sustain this role? On the anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake and related events at Fukushima, panelists discussed Japan's global manufacturing system and the domestic challenges of creating a supportive setting, in particular in terms of energy policy.

"Toward Global Coordination of Monetary Policy?"
Feb. 20, 2014
Speaker: Masaaki Shirakawa, former Governor, The Bank of Japan and Gordon Hanson, Professor of Economics, UC San Diego
During the past six years, central banks around the world have thrown away the rulebook for monetary policy. As the global economy appears on the verge of returning to normal times, what comes next for monetary policy and how do central banks responsibly unload the trove of assets they have accumulated?

"China Internet Battles"
Feb. 4, 2014
Speaker: Charles Zhang, founder, board chair and CEO of Sohu
Dr. Charles Zhang is one of the handful of Internet CEOs who are driving the technological and policy transformation of China’s dramatically expanding Internet. Drawing on his own experience, he described the cut-throat competition among the Internet firms and discussed his ideas about what role government policy and legal system should play to guarantee the fairness and public service orientation of this competition.

Japanese Manufacturing Strength: Monozukuri and Genba Management
Feb. 4, 2014 | Student Lunch
Speaker: Masakazu Sekiguchi, Vice President and Senior Officer, Manufacturing and Global Operations at Bridgestone
Masakazu Sekiguchi oversees procurement, manufacturing management, global production administration and logistics, and mold technology and manufacturing. In this luncheon, he presented his basic management approach.

"Changing Dynamics in East Asia and Korean Politics"
Jan. 22, 2014 | Interview | Video of Talk
Speaker: Hak-kyu Sohn, Former Governor of the Gyeonggi-do province in South Korea
Mr. Sohn was an activist in the democratic movement beginning as a student and as a university professor at Inha and Sogang universities.

"Peru: The Andean Jaguar"
Jan. 9, 2014
Speaker: Dr. Daniel Schydlowsky, Chief Financial Regulator of Peru
Dr. Schydlowsky reviewed the fundamental drivers of Peru´s recent growth, related it to external market as well as internal political factors, assessed the role of policy and evaluated how much room there is for continued growth.


"Macroeconomic Challenges in Latin America to 2020"

Nov. 6, 2013 | Interview | Video of Talk
Speaker: Joaquín Vial, Board Member, Central Bank of Chile
In his public talk, Dr. Vial discussed the issues created by demographic transitions, dependence on commodity exports and the challenges for macroeconomic policy in the region.

"China and the Future of Global Manufacturing"
Oct. 8, 2013 | Slideshow | Interview | Video of Talk
Speaker: James Fallows, National Correspondent, The Atlantic
In his public talk, Mr. Fallows discussed the economic, political, and technological trends in China, in the United States, and elsewhere that are shaping the prospects for the next wave of innovation, corporate success, and the growth of manufacturing jobs around the world.

"Fukushima and the Politics of Japan’s Energy and Innovation Policy"
Sept. 20, 2013
Speaker: Dr. Kiyoshi Kurokawa, Chairman, Health and Global Policy Institute and Chair, Parliamentary Commissioned Independent Task Force for Fukushima Nuclear Accident Investigation
In this public talk, Dr. Kiyoshi Kurokawa discussed the ongoing politics of Japan's energy and innovation policy in relation to his role with Fukushima.

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