2009 Lifetime

2009 Lifetime Acheivement Award Honoree
Bill Emmott
Former Editor
The Economist

bill emmottFrom 1993 until March 31, 2006, Bill Emmott was the editor of The Economist, the world's leading weekly magazine on current affairs and business. He is now an independent writer, speaker and consultant, based in London and Somerset. When he left, The Economist's circulation was almost 1.1 million worldwide, having more than doubled in the previous 13 years. (As of early 2009, circulation had reached 1.4 million.)

After studying politics, philosophy and economics at Magdalen College, Oxford, in 1975-78, Emmott moved to Nuffield College to do postgraduate research into the French Communist party's spell in government in 1944-47.

Before completing that, however, in 1980, Emmott joined The Economist's Brussels office, writing about EEC affairs and the Benelux countries. In 1982, he became the paper's economics correspondent in London and the following year moved to Tokyo to cover Japan and South Korea. In mid-1986, he returned to London as the finance editor; in January 1989, he became business affairs editor, responsible for all the paper's coverage of business, finance and science. He was appointed to the editorship of The Economist in March 1993.

Emmott has published 10 books. The first he co-wrote with Rupert Pennant-Rea, "The Pocket Economist," part of The Economist series of pocket guides, which was published by Blackwell's in 1983. Seven of Emmott's books have been on Japan, with four of those published only in Japanese translation:"The Sun Also Sets: The Limits to Japan's Economic Power," published by Times Books in America, Simon & Schuster in the United Kingdom and Soshisha in Japan in 1989; "Japan's Global Reach: The Influence, Strategies and Weaknesses of Japan's Multinational Corporations", published by Century Business in 1992 and (under the title "Japanophobia") by Times Books in America in 1993;"Kanryo no Taizai" (The Bureaucrats' Deadly Sins), published only in Japanese by Soshisha in 1996; a book version of an extended essay, published in The Economist in October 2005 and called "The Sun also Rises" to echo his 1989 book, was published in Japanese translation under that same title (Hiwa Mata Noboru in Japanese) by Soshisha in January 2006. A fifth book about Japan, a compilation of columns from Japanese magazines, was published by PHP in October 2006 under the title of "Japan's New Golden Age - of the Next Ten Years". In February 2007, a sixth was published, again in Japanese only: "Japan's Choices", or "Nihon no Sentaku", a discussion with Peter Tasker, published by Kodansha. The seventh was published in December 2008 by PHP, again a compilation of updated columns and articles published in Japanese, as "Sekai Choryu no Yomikata" (Reading the World's Currents). It is now in its seventh printing, with a total of 53,500 copies. "The Sun Also Sets" was a bestseller in Japanese, with more than 300,000 copies sold.

In September 1999, Emmott wrote an extended essay for The Economist on the 20th century, called "Freedom's Journey". In June 2002, he wrote another extended essay for The Economist, on America's world role following Sept. 11th, called "Present at the Creation". His fourth English-language book "20:21 Vision - 20th Century Lessons for the 21st Century", which builds in part on the foundation of those essays, was published in February 2003 by The Penguin Press in Britain, Farrar, Straus and Giroux in the United States, S. Fischer Verlag in Germany and Soshisha in Japan. In June 2003, he wrote another extended essay for The Economist on capitalism and democracy, to mark the publication's 160th anniversary.

Emmott's latest English book, "Rivals: How the Power Struggle between China, India and Japan will Shape our Next Decade", was published in April 2008 in Britain, May in the United States and June in Italy and Japan. The publishers are Allen Lane/The Penguin Press in Britain, Harcourt in America, Nikkei in Japan, Rizzoli in Italy, Ars Longa in Taiwan (2009) and Random House in South Korea (2009). "Rivals" was shortlisted for the Lionel Gelber prize for books on international affairs and for the Duke of Westminster Medal for books on military history.

Emmott writes regular columns on international affairs for Italy's top daily newspaper, the Corriere della Sera. He also writes frequently for Exame, Brazil's leading business magazine, for a Japanese monthly magazine, Ushio, and for the Asahi Shimbun, one of Japan's biggest-selling daily newspapers. He is a regular contributor to the Guardian and the Daily Telegraph in Britain. His columns are now also appearing fortnightly in BusinessWorld, India's leading business magazine.

In 2003, Emmott was chosen by a jury of senior Italian journalists as the winner of the "È giornalismo" ("This is journalism") award, the first time that a foreigner had been given this prestigious Italian journalism prize. In 2006-07, he received four journalism awards in Britain: a special award from the Wincott Foundation; the "business journalist of the year" award from the London Press Club; the "Decade of Excellence" award from the World Leadership Forum's business journalism awards programme; and a "Lifetime Achievement" award from the Work Foundation.

Emmott is chairman of the trustees of the London Library; a member of the executive committee of the Trilateral Commission; a director of Development Consultants International, a Dublin-based company; a member of the Swiss Re Chairman's Advisory Panel; an adviser to JR Central, Japan's premier high-speed railway company; a member of the President's Council of the University of Tokyo; a member of the board of the Salzburg Global Seminar; and co-chairman (with the Hon Roy MacLaren) of the Canada-Europe Roundtable for Business. He was a board director of The Economist Group from 1993 until 2006. He is a trustee of the Marjorie Deane Financial Journalism Foundation. He has honorary degrees from Warwick and City universities in Britain and Northwestern University in America, and is an honorary fellow of Magdalen College, Oxford.

 

Gerald Loeb Awards