This book goes back to the roots of modern development and extends far into the future. Based on an original analysis of economic data by a physicist, it aims not just to explain what happened, but to understand why the global economy has become what it is today. It points at the existence of hitherto unrecognized long-term periods, each ending in a major crisis: the Great Depression of the 1930s and the stagflation of the 1970s, and explains their deeper long-term causes. Understanding the forces that have driven the economy allows the author to make sensible but surprising forecasts up to 2100: a Mega Depression in the late 2020s and zero economic growth in the richest nations within a few decades. It also forecasts radical global power shifts. The main text does not require any advanced knowledge of economics. The details and complex evidence underpinning this work are contained in comprehensive Appendices.
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