Kishore Mahbubani in British magazine’s list of top 50 world thinkers

Diplomat Kishore Mahbubani has been named by a leading British current affairs magazine as one of this year’s top 50 world thinkers.

The dean of the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy is the only Singaporean on a list that includes Pope Francis, International Monetary Fund managing director Christine Lagarde and economist- philosopher Amartya Sen.

Mr Jonathan Derbyshire, managing editor of Prospect magazine, said that it gave credit to the currency of the candidates’ thinking in drawing up its list.

“Kishore Mahbubani’s work certainly grapples with some of the biggest questions of our time, sketching as it does the contours of a new era in which the west can no longer take its primacy for granted,” he said.

An author of several books, Prof Mahbubani said it was a great honour to have his most recent book, The Great Convergence: Asia, the West and the Logic of One World, recognised by Prospect’s listing.

He said: “I am glad that this book is having a positive effect globally.”

This is the fifth time Prof Mahbubani has been named in a list of globally influential thinkers.

His first time was in 2005 when he was named as one of Prospect and Foreign Policy magazines’ top 100 public intellectuals in the world.

In 2009, the Financial Times included him as one of 50 individuals who would shape the debate on capitalism’s future.

He was also selected as one of Foreign Policy’s top 100 global thinkers in 2010 and 2011.

The don, who writes a monthly column in The Straits Times’ By Invitation series, has been lauded for being among the first to argue that Asian powers were ascending while the influence of Western democracies was declining.

His recent ST columns have also touched on issues such as public transport and Singapore’s soft power.

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