Stephen Roach's new book, Accidental Conflict, among the Financial Times' Best Books of 2022 (in economics), argues that conflict escalation between the world's two superpowers wouldn't have happened had it not been for the false narratives that both countries embrace in blaming each other for their own economic and political shortcomings. These false narratives, amplified by information distortion and social networks, are more a reflection of each nation's exaggerated fears of the other than an honest self-assessment of serious problems of their own making. Unfortunately, this blame game continues to intensify. An innovative roadmap for conflict resolution is presented as an urgent action plan that should be seriously considered by both sides before it is too late.
Senior Fellow at Paul Tsai China Center, Yale Law School
Stephen Roach has been a senior fellow at Yale University since 2010 where he developed new courses on Asia, notably "The Next China" and "The Lessons of Japan." Prior to moving to academia, he spent thirty years at Morgan Stanley, where for the bulk of his career he served as the firm′s chief economist, heading up a highly regarded team of economists around the world.
His recent research has focused on the conflict-prone relationship between the world's two largest economies, which was featured in his 2014 book Unbalanced and in his new book Accidental Conflict. Prior to joining Morgan Stanley in 1982, he worked in senior capacities at Morgan Guaranty Trust Company and the Federal Reserve Board in Washington D.C. He holds a PhD in economics from New York University and was a research fellow at the Brookings Institution.