Ralph Gomory, president of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, will discuss globalization and trade policy during a lecture at Rochester Institute of Technology Dec.7. The talk will be based on his book, Global Trade and Conflicting National Interests, which he co-authored with Princeton University Economist William Baumol. Their book contradicts the conventional wisdom that increased trade is automatically beneficial for countries and describes how the public discussions of free trade and globalization have been conflated.
Gomory will give the Science, Technology and Society/Public Policy Lecture 2:30-4 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7, in RIT’s Golisano College Auditorium. A reception will follow.
“In this new era of globalization, the interests of companies and countries have diverged. In contrast with the past, what is good for America’s global corporations is no longer necessarily good for the American people,” Gomory said recently during testimony before Congress.
“Globalization has now made it possible for global corporations to pursue their profits by building capabilities abroad. Instead of investing alongside U.S. workers and using their investment and R&D to increase their productivity, corporations today can produce goods and services abroad using low-cost labor and import them to the U.S. But in creating their profits this way, they are building up the GDP of other countries while breaking their once tight link with America’s own GDP.”
Gomory, one of the country’s foremost technology leaders, has been president of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation since 1989 and previously served as IBM’s research director. Under his leadership, IBM’s research division invented the Relational database, a significant contribution to the computer industry, and won two Nobel Prizes. Gomory was also the inventor of integer programming, a fundamental technique used to solve optimization problems.
“More than anyone else, Ralph Gomory is having a major impact on the policy discussions about trade, offshoring and globalization in Washington,” says RIT public policy professor Ron Hira. “His theoretical work has been a significant breakthrough in helping us understand the likely impacts of offshoring and globalization. And given his business background, as an executive as well as serving on major corporate boards, Gomory provides a perspective that is grounded in empirical reality that simply can’t be ignored by policymakers.”
WHAT: “Global Trade and Conflicting National Interest”—a free lecture by Ralph Gomory, author and president of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.
WHEN: 2:30-4 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7
WHERE: Golisano College Auditorium, B. Thomas Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences, Rochester Institute of Technology.
SPONSOR: Science, Technology and Society/Public Policy Department, College of Liberal Arts, Rochester Institute of Technology.