Next STEP Global Conference 2022

Techno-Nationalism and the Changing Prospects for Prosperity


November 9, 5:30 AM EST to November 11, 2022, 2:00 AM EST
Singapore (November 9, 2022 6:30 PM SGT to November 11, 2022 3:00 PM SGT)

Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE) and Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (LKYSPP)

Event Summary

The Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE) and the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (LKYSPP) at the National University of Singapore convened the second annual Next STEP Global Conference on November 9-11, 2022, in Singapore. Next STEP is about finding the global Solutions to Economic Problems in a collaborative invitation-only community that spans generations, nations, and professions. This conference focused on the economic implications of techno-nationalism—the increasingly widespread idea that a country’s prosperity and security depend on gaining dominance or self-reliance in technology and that other countries’ technological progress is a threat.

To address this challenge to the global economy and technological innovation, LKYSPP and PIIE invited a select group of top policymakers, tech investors and leaders, and economic experts to define the issues, and examine how policies in specific sectors will shape business and innovation prospects and how techno-nationalism will influence global efforts to address decarbonization, public investment, and economic opportunity.

The conference began with two livestreamed sessions, available on this page:

Small-group invitation-only sessions followed, covering economic security and innovation, bifurcation in information technology and fintech, Asian economic integration, the future of multinational industries, global value chains, tech investment, services trade, decarbonization efforts, and more.

The techno-nationalistic worldview is starting to dominate economic and foreign policy making in major economies, notably in China and the United States. The spread of COVID-19, supply chain disruptions, geopolitical conflict, and nationalist dissatisfaction with globalization all fuel this movement. The United States and China are racing to secure and develop the global flows of critical technologies through increasing control over trade, investment, and digital commerce—independent third countries, meanwhile, are trying to find their way between openness and alliances, all while navigating geopolitical, environmental, and private business interests.

While combining both justified and ill-founded concerns, unchecked techno-nationalism could stifle innovation globally, increase risk of armed conflict, disrupt economic and political freedom, and impede policies to address global health and climate change. Techno-nationalism is already transforming the global business and investment environment, not just supply chains, in other profound but overlooked ways. Improved resilience may be necessary, but pursuing it through nationalization of commerce and innovation will be costly and may be self-defeating.


  • Techno-nationalism saving positive-sum technology from the zero-sum challenge
  • Is bifurcation in emerging technology inevitable?
  • Is bifurcation in fintech inevitable?
  • What is the future of multinational industries and global value chains caught between the Chinese and US governments? What happens to services as well as manufactures?
  • What is the future for network and information technologies when caught between demands for data localization and patriotic R&D or access rules? Can a global internet survive techno-nationalism?
  • Asian economic integration in a widening Pacific
  • Global tech investment in a divided world
  • The Green Great Game: Techno-nationalism, critical minerals, and decarbonization 
  • Is it techno-nationalism or techno-resilience?
  • How techno-nationalism can become techno-internationalism


Opening keynote speaker:

Vivian Balakrishnan
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Singapore


Adam Posen
President, Peterson Institute for International Economics (PIIE)

Danny Quah
Dean and Li Ka Shing Professor in Economics, Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy (LKYSPP) at the National University of Singapore


Muhamad Chatib Basri
Former Minister of Finance of Indonesia

Emily Blanchard
Chief Economist, US Department of State

Chad P. Bown
Reginald Jones Senior Fellow, PIIE

Richard Cantor
Vice Chairman, Moody's Investors Service

Antonio Fatás
Professor of Economics, INSEAD

Akio Fujii
Chair of the Editorial Board, Nikkei

Indermit Gill
Chief Economist and Senior Vice President for Development Economics, World Bank Group

Anabel González
Deputy Director-General, World Trade Organization

Lorin Gu
Founding Partner, Recharge Capital

Yeo Han-koo
Former Trade Minister of the Republic of Korea

Cullen S. Hendrix
Senior Fellow, PIIE

Eunice Huang
Head of Asia-Pacific Trade Policy, Google

Kazumasa Iwata
President, Japan Center for Economic Research

Jacob Funk Kirkegaard
Nonresident Senior Fellow, PIIE

Nicholas R. Lardy
Nonresident Senior Fellow, PIIE

Ignatius Lim
Senior International Adviser, Shell

Mary E. Lovely
Anthony M. Solomon Senior Fellow, PIIE

Cecilia Malmström
Nonresident Senior Fellow, PIIE, and former European Commissioner for Trade

Amanda Murphy
Head of Commercial Banking, South and South East Asia, HSBC

Dave Ramsden
Deputy Governor for Markets and Banking, Bank of England

Dilhan Pillay Sandrasegara
Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer, Temasek

Jeffrey J. Schott
Senior Fellow, PIIE

Wern-Yuen Tan
CEO for Asia Pacific, Australia, New Zealand, and China, PepsiCo

Simon Tay
Chairman, Singapore Institute of International Affairs

Beatrice Weder di Mauro
President, Centre for Economic Policy Research

George Yeo
Visiting Scholar, LKYSPP at the National University of Singapore; former Singapore Cabinet Minister

Bernard Yeung
Stephen Riady Distinguished Professor in Finance and Strategic Management, National University of Singapore Business School

Tao Zhang
Chief Representative for Asia and the Pacific, Bank for International Settlements



About This Series

The annual Next STEP (Solutions to Economic Problems) Global Conference was launched in 2021 by the Peterson Institute for International Economics and the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore. This series of global dialogues invites leaders to address challenges to human well-being posed by economic instability, insecurity, and exclusion. The sessions are aimed at producing actionable, effective, and sustainable solutions that can be adopted by national governments and international institutions.