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Piketty’s “Capital in the Twenty-First Century” Wins 2015 CFR Arthur Ross Book Award

December 4, 2015


December 4, 2015French economist Thomas Piketty has won the fourteenth annual Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) Arthur Ross Book Award for Capital in the Twenty-First Century (Belknap Press) and will receive $15,000. On December 9, CFR will honor the awardees at a cocktail reception hosted by Gideon Rose, editor of Foreign Affairs and chair of the independent award jury.

“Rising economic inequality has become one of the defining features of the contemporary era, and nothing has done more to frame the discussion than Piketty’s masterwork of data collection and analysis—whether or not one agrees with his conclusions and recommendations,” said Gideon Rose.

The jury awarded the Silver Medal and $7,500 to Princeton University professor Stephen Kotkin for Stalin: Volume I: Paradoxes of Power, 1878-1928 (Penguin Press).

The Bronze Medal and $2,500 were awarded to Evan Osnos, a staff writer at the New Yorker and a fellow at the Brookings Institution, for Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China (Farrar, Straus & Giroux).

Additional shortlist nominees:

  • Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies’ Francis Fukuyama for Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy (Farrar, Straus & Giroux)
  • New York Times’ Carlotta Gall for The Wrong Enemy: America in Afghanistan, 2001-2014 (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt)
  • New Yorker’s Lawrence Wright for Thirteen Days in September: Carter, Begin, and Sadat at Camp David (Knopf Doubleday)

Endowed by the late Arthur Ross in 2001, this award honors nonfiction works, in English or translation, that bring forth new information that changes the understanding of events or problems, develop analytical approaches that offer insight into critical issues, or introduce ideas that help resolve foreign policy problems. The jury is independent of the Council on Foreign Relations and consists of a group of international affairs scholars and practitioners.


Gideon Rose (Chair)
Peter G. Peterson Chair and Editor, Foreign Affairs

Lisa Anderson
President, American University in Cairo

Sumit Ganguly
Director, Center on American and Global Security, Indiana University, Bloomington

Susan K. Purcell
Director, Center for Hemispheric Policy, University of Miami

Mary Elise Sarotte
Professor of International Relations and History and Dean’s Professor of History, University of Southern California; Research Associate, Harvard University

Calvin G. Sims
President and Chief Executive Officer, International House

Andrew Ross Sorkin
Columnist and Assistant Business Editor, New York Times

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