Resources and Publications

A Bretton Woods for Innovation

October 11, 2011
| Reports

In a World Policy Institute article, Senior Analyst Stephen Ezell reflects on the 44 nations that convened in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire to make financial arrangements for the post-World War II economy. While these institutions worked well for half a century, now that the commodity-based manufacturing system has evolved into a knowledge and innovation economy, the strains on the Bretton Woods system have become clear.Going forward, the challenge will be to balance countries’ pursuit of the highest possible standard of living for their citizens in a way that promotes, rather than distorts, global innovation. We need a new international framework that sets clear parameters for what constitutes fair and unfair innovation competition, creating new institutions (and updating old ones) that maximize innovation.