The Wake-Up Call: Why the Pandemic Has Exposed the Weakness of the West, and How to Fix It (Hardcover)
"[An] executive summary of modern political history studded with sweeping assertions and telling anecdotes." -- The New York Times Book Review
"Thought-provoking." -- Kirkus Reviews
"The Wake-Up Call argues that Covid-19 has exposed not just one president's shortcomings but a much more profound degeneration of governance dating back long before 2016...You will read no more interesting book on the political consequences of the pandemic than this." -- Niall Ferguson, author of Civilization: The West and the Rest
An urgent and informed look at the challenges America and world governments will face in a post Covid-19 world.
The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed that governments matter again, that competent leadership is the difference between living and dying. A few governments proved adept at handling the crisis while many others failed. Are Western governments healthy and strong enough to keep their citizens safe from another virulent virus—and protect their economies from collapse? Is global leadership passing from the United States to Asia—and particularly China?
The Wake-Up Call addresses these urgent questions. Journalists and longtime collaborators John Micklethwait and Adrian Wooldridge identify the problems Western leaders face, and outline a detailed plan to help them become more vigilant, better prepared, and responsive to disruptive future events.
The problems that face us are enormous; as The Wake-Up Call makes clear, governments around the world must re-engineer the way they operate to successfully meet the challenges ahead.
About the Author
John Micklethwait is the editor-in-chief of Bloomberg and was previously editor-in-chief at The Economist.
Adrian Wooldridge is the management editor and “Schumpeter” columnist of The Economist. He was educated at Balliol College, Oxford, and All Souls College, Oxford, where he held a Prize Fellowship. He was formerly The Economist’s Washington bureau chief and “Lexington” columnist. He is the coauthor, with John Micklethwait, of five books—including The Witch Doctors: Making Sense of the Management Gurus; A Future Perfect: The Challenge and Hidden Promise of Globalization; The Company: A Short History of a Revolutionary Idea; and The Right Nation: Conservative Power in America—and the author of Measuring the Mind: Education and Psychology in England c.1860-1990.
"[An] executive summary of modern political history studded with sweeping assertions and telling anecdotes."
— The New York Times Book Review
— Kirkus Reviews
"A succinct and credible assessment of Western government dysfunctions."
— Publishers Weekly
"A shot in the arm...powerful.”
— The Financial Times
"A readable and fascinating excursion."
— The Economist
"With their customary wit and insight, John Mickethwait and Adrian Wooldridge offer a fresh take on an old theme: the decline of the West. The Wake-Up Call argues that Covid-19 has exposed not just one president's shortcomings but a much more profound degeneration of governance dating back long before 2016. Can the United States and whatever else remains of “the West” repair their broken systems sufficiently to compete with East Asia's alternatives? And who exactly is Bill Lincoln? You will read no more interesting book on the political consequences of the pandemic than this."
— Niall Ferguson, author of Civilization: The West and the Rest
"COVID-19 was a wake-up call for the West - especially the United States. Micklethwait and Wooldridge offer a masterful analysis of Western failure, and a clear program for the future."
— Anne Applebaum