Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Future Is Asian” as Want to Read:
The Future Is Asian
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Future Is Asian

3.85  ·  Rating details ·  330 ratings  ·  61 reviews
In the 19th century, the world was Europeanized. In the 20th century, it was Americanized. Now, in the 21st century, the world is being Asianized.

The “Asian Century” is even bigger than you think. Far greater than just China, the new Asian system taking shape is a multi-civilizational order spanning Saudi Arabia to Japan, Russia to Australia, Turkey to Indonesia—linking fiv
Hardcover, 448 pages
Published February 5th 2019 by Simon Schuster
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Future Is Asian, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Future Is Asian

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.85  · 
Rating details
 ·  330 ratings  ·  61 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Future Is Asian
Feb 21, 2019 rated it really liked it
As the title suggests, "The Future is Asian" tracks Asia's recent rise to global prominence and makes the case that much of the world's economic, political, and cultural innovations will come from this region. Parag Khanna does an excellent job painting a larger picture of Asia's rise through thousands of smaller anecdotes. The book covers nearly everything from China's infrastructure projects in Africa to K-Pop. However, sometimes his breathless enthusiasm for Asia overlooks some of the nuances ...more
Gary Moreau
May 16, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A dyed-in-the-wool white American male, I moved to China in 2007 for one very simple reason—I desperately needed a job. And because I was relatively old and had spent my career in the out-of-fashion world of smoke stacks and loud machines, no company in the US would touch me.

I have thrived in China, where there is still respect for factories (My factory has a smokestack but exports almost nothing to the US.) and even more respect for old executives like me. They don’t consider us una
The Future is Asian by Parag Khanna is an interesting book on the rise of Asia and Asian systems - technocracy, illiberalism, meritocracy, economic dynamism and free trade. Khanna looks at Asia through a grand sweep of history and modern politics and economic pragmatism. That in itself is the crux of the book - a focus on pragmatic development and a breathless hope for the future. It is refreshing to read a book with this tone, as much in political theory these days is constantly negative. Khann ...more
Vikas Erraballi
Mar 12, 2019 rated it really liked it
Reads at times like a marketing brochure. it’s never going to be a classic but it’s extremely useful to get up to speed in 2019.
Mar 22, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2019
I picked up this book because I heard an interview with the author on Azeem Azhar's podcast, and in half an hour at 2x speed the author has some thought-provoking ideas into the recent past and near future of the Asian continent, with its many billions. At book length, however, these ideas are revealed as remarkably shallow. The future may very well be Asian, but this book reads like a few dozen issues of The Economist were jammed into a sausage grinder and slapped between two covers. Read Bruno Maçães' ...more
John Galt
Mar 08, 2019 rated it it was ok
When reading this I quickly thought of Fukuyama's 'End of History' and that's NOT a compliment. The author is much too optimistic about "reconciliation" between Taiwan and China for example. And a united "Korea" will be a powerhouse but NOT discussing the military implications. Think Japan. Will 'Asia' continue to grow economically, yes, however I think it will be more uneven and full of conflict then suggested.
Apr 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
4+ I found this very useful. It is dense, there are pages and pages of details on trade relations between Asian countries, but the level of detail also elevates it above the usual ‘China is coming’ literature. I very much appreciate that this looks at Asia as a whole and has given me a starting point to expand my knowledge of the entire region (I am pretty OK when it comes to Asian history, less so with current affairs). The moral view point, if you can call it that, is sometimes confusing - it ...more
May Ling
Oct 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: future
Summary: This book did not do it for me. However, it's great if you want an overview and are new trying to understand Asia. It is not good for those that are looking for hard conclusions or know a lot about Asia or specific regions of Asia.

Where to even begin! This book feels a bit like a dump of information and snippets. That is so relevant if you are new to Asia. But it lacks depth if you are farther along in your research or thoughts. Legitimately, he does address all of Asia. It's top level
Isabelle | BookwyrmBites
I received a free copy of this book through Netgalley for review purposes. This does not affect my rating or opinions of the book.

DNF at 33%.

For all the beginning talk about how Asia is more than China and Japan, and should also include Russia and Australia, there sure is a LOT of focus on China (and to a lesser extent Japan). Yes, I get that it's a global superpower and thus a major investor and influence in Asian, and has ties to every country, but it seems to upstage all the o
Mar 31, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: listened-2019
Khanna provides an Asian perspective on the future of international relations. The best part of his writing is how he highlights the diversity of views not just across Asia, but within Asian countries themselves. He challenges the conventional wisdom of many public thinkers and policy makers in the US by highlighting the challenges facing their counterparts in other countries. However, in covering all of Asia in one book, from the Middle East to East Asia, Khanna dilutes the narrative and loses ...more
B. Cheng
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: asia, china, library-audio
I wanted to like this book and I think the author's general hypothesis is accurate, Asia is the future, however the author is either incredibly naive about China's role in Asia or just a "panda hugger". The idea that China's Belt & Road initiative or their neo-colonialism in Africa is done benevolently and not with the intent of gaining resources & power is laughable. The naivete of the author is seen in almost every aspect, to generally ignoring the many bubbling conflicts in the region ...more
Zachery Tyson
This book is worth a read, period. But it comes across as less a travelogue or regional analysis in the vein of Robert Kaplan and more like a recitation of positive factoids about the redistribution of global wealth from west to east that is currently happening. Parag is intimately familiar with the shifting global flows of wealth, people, and talent, and makes a compelling case for the knitting together of supra-Asian identity out of the incredibly diverse cast of countries from Russia to Austr ...more
Mar 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Necessarily and unabashedly empowering and inspiring, albeit at times too fancifully theoretical—but understandably casting a big long-term vision more so than providing practical day-to-day suggestions for its concrete implementation.
May 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
A comprehensive overview on recent developments in Asia, supported by statistics and anecdotes.
Mar 08, 2019 rated it liked it
Large portions of this book are plagiarized from inspired by the 2015 book: The New Silk Roads: The Present and Future of the World by Peter Frankopan
Tõnu Vahtra
Jul 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Among the few books about Asia I've read so far that are not solely about China (maybe only 25% of this book is about China). This book is packing a lot of information so it is mostly descriptive and less reflective/analytical and sometimes it feels that it's overemphasizing all the positive aspects while paying less attention to risks and negative spillover effects. Still we do definitely need such books about Asia as by nature people are afraid of what they do not understand and Western people ...more
Sanford Chee
Jan 16, 2019 rated it liked it
ST Jan 6, 2019

Asia's Technocratic Future ST Jan 13, 2019

McKinsey 'Asia's Future is Now'

5b Asians >people live in Asia than outside it.
Mutually rein
Not sure if my Asian-American-self is as optimistic as Asians in this book seem to be about the future, but it was fun to read how Asia is returning back to its historical role in global affairs.
Oct 05, 2019 rated it it was ok
A painful read. The beginning was especially tedious as it dryly enumerated a history of Asian countries. It lacked context. It felt like I was reading a timeline. Having read about some of these events separately, I know some of these are worthy of books in and of themselves. But they were summarized into what basically amounted to a bullet point. It was bad.

Finally, when his attempt at history was over, he moved on to the present. This was done by looking at each country and how th
Nov 05, 2019 rated it did not like it
An incredibly superficial book, written entirely as a money spinner and to keep the author on his endless global speaking tour. Anybody who has paid even cursory attention to the rise of Asia, the challenge this poses to a US and Western-centric world order, and the shifting terrain of the global economy over the past few decades will not gain a single insight from this book. I truly believe that even reading a single a special issue of the economist on the matter would leave one much better inf ...more
Ammi Bui
Nov 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
As an American, I have been feeling very down about the state of my country and the world, and was utterly convinced that my generation might be the last to reach old age before the Earth imploded upon itself. But then I read this book, and now I have renewed hope for our future. I, and I'm sure many other fellow westerners as well, had been ignorant to the fact that Asia has been faring so well (in higher education, economic expansion, increasing quality of life, etc.) while the West spirals in ...more
A Reader
Apr 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics
When we think of Asia, it is China and perhaps India that immediately come to mind. But there is more to Asia than these two big countries. Asia stretches from Australia to Turkey and from Japan to Saudi Arabia. It is the most ethnically, culturally and linguistically diverse region of the planet, linking 4.5 billion people, the majority of the world population through trading, finance and infrastructure. Together they represent 40 percent of the global GDP. As the countries of Asia, collectivel ...more
Apr 06, 2019 rated it liked it
The biggest problem for this book is that it tries to make the case that “Asia” is on a clearly different trajectory than the “West”, picking data points that supports this view and spending a paragraph on women’s rights, half a page on autocratic leaders and their use of the death penalty and zero interest in LGBT+ rights.
The big idea of the book seems to be that “Asia” will all move towards a nice technocratic model without any nasty selfish leaders, while the “West” because of liberal values
Feb 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
An interesting book detailing the advent of what will probably be the next globe-based order centered on Asian values, principles and politics. Very convincing but with its emphasis on a centrally-planned society the book neglects to discuss the "Bad Emperor" problem that has periodically plagued the peoples of China. In western societies we have occasionally had to contend with our own loathsome leaders (Trump?) but a well-designed constitution, a reasonably well-organized representative democr ...more
Apr 07, 2019 rated it liked it
This book is a long series of anecdotes that attempt to outline the current status of the relationship between Asia and the rest of the world period and the respect it's very interesting and seemingly comprehensive. The others thinking on the future is exceedingly optimistic in terms of the future for suits and goals and accomplishments which he expects will come to fusion countries period. Perhaps my only critique and it is a substantial critique of the work is that the author does not seem to ...more
Mar 21, 2019 rated it liked it
This book marshals impressive facts but suffers from a central confusion. All the facts support a rise of China in particular, and of the non-Western world (including Asia, Africa, Latin America, Central Asia) in general. Khanna however strains to connect the disparate regions of the "continent" of Asia into a cohesive story that doesn't fit together. "West Asia" is increasingly influenced by China but only to the extent that Europe is too; and it is not a compelling reason to combine Western an ...more
Seylene sl
Apr 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
As always, when you spend too much time finishing a book by leaving so much not-reading-time in between, you forgets the narratives. That’s me and this book. But I think it worths a read. It’s shed light on the current and future globalization by including Asia in the picture not merely as a background picture but as one of the main actors. Just look at how far Asia has become and they will only be going forward. I only hope it is a sustainable growth for all. And hoping China is not moving too ...more
Michael Hester
May 08, 2019 rated it liked it
FIRST: small complaint about the audio version. Author does not correctly pronounce Chinese words, minor annoyance but just a heads up.

Very comprehensive book about Asian headlines and trends, and a good look at Asian history generally. For that reason, I recommend the book for anyone interested in Asian geopolitics and its relevance.

However, overall the book was a bit more hopeful and positive than I think reality would suggest. Also, a little light on predictions or speculation about the fut
Sep 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is a speedy look through how “Asia” is integrating. I use quotes b/c the authors definition of Asia is more expansive than is usually thought. It’s a generally positive look at Asia and how as a whole it is becoming an area full of potential great powers. However the point is made that Asia will not be something like the EU. Essentially he is saying the geo politics and business relations are going to move back to what they have been through most of history; multiple powers continually inte ...more
Jun 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Exciting read. The points he raised are relevant, especially the points in chapter 9 about the Singapore system(s). This book is eye-opening and reckoning with the speed that Asia, on the whole, is moving is frightful.

It’s true that the book is written like marketing material and is intentionally doesn’t address the glaring problems like rising nationalism in Indonesia, Philippines, Myanmar. Also, radical Islam has also taken root in the region. I would have liked to see the author’s take on th
« previous 1 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
Parag Khanna is Founder & Managing Partner of FutureMap, a data and scenario based strategic advisory firm. He is the international bestselling author of six books, has traveled to most of the countries of the world, and holds a PhD from the London School of Economics
“Billions of Asians growing up in the past two decades have experienced geopolitical stability, rapidly expanding prosperity, and surging national pride. The world they know is one not of Western dominance but of Asian ascendance.” 0 likes
More quotes…