Description of Milken Institute Video: November 6, 2013
5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m.
How do economies, and individuals, thrive? It’s largely a matter of values and motivations, in the view of Nobel laureate Edmund Phelps. At this private Milken Institute event, presented in partnership with RAND Corporation, the renowned economist will offer a sweeping argument about what makes nations prosper and why those sources of affluence are in jeopardy. That argument fills the pages of Phelps’ new book, “Mass Flourishing: How Grassroots Innovation Created Jobs, Challenge, and Change.”
Phelps credits the Western world’s prosperity to what he terms “modern” values, such as the desire to create, explore and meet challenges. That explosion of innovation and productivity gave rise to not only unprecedented wealth, but “flourishing”–meaningful work, self-expression and personal growth. Yet the West’s vigor is waning, threatened, he believes, by the return of values that stifle individual aspirations. Phelps asks whether industrialized nations will recommit themselves to modernity, grassroots dynamism and widespread personal fulfillment, or will only a few in those societies flourish.