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About Jared Cohen
Jared Cohen is the founder and CEO of Jigsaw at Alphabet Inc. He also serves as an Adjunct Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. Prior to Alphabet, he was Google’s first Director of Ideas and chief advisor to Google's executive chairman Eric Schmidt. From 2006 to 2010 he served as a member of the Secretary of State's Policy Planning Staff and as a close advisor to both Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton.
Cohen is the New York Times bestselling author of four books, including Children of Jihad, One Hundred Days of Silence: America and the Rwanda Genocide, and The New Digital Age: Transforming Nations, Business, and our Lives, which he co-authored with Eric Schmidt. His new book, The Accidental Presidents, examines the eight instances in American history when a president has died in office. His writing has appeared in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Foreign Affairs, LA Times, Washington Post, TIME Magazine, and Foreign Policy.
He has been named to the "TIME 100" list, Foreign Policy's “Top 100 Global Thinkers,” and Vanity Fair's "Next Establishment." Cohen serves on several advisory boards, including Allianz, Stanford University’s Freeman-Spogli Institute, Rivet Ventures, FluidMarket, ASAPP, and NCTC. he is a member of GenNext and a Young Global Leader at the World Economic Forum.
Cohen received his B.A. from Stanford University and his M.Phil in International Relations from the University of Oxford, where he studied as a Rhodes Scholar. He speaks fluent Swahili.
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The strength and prestige of the American presidency has waxed and waned since George Washington. Eight men have succeeded to the presidency when the incumbent died in office. In one way or another they vastly changed our history. Only Theodore Roosevelt would have been elected in his own right. Only TR, Truman, Coolidge, and LBJ were re-elected.
John Tyler succeeded William Henry Harrison who died 30 days into his term. He was kicked out of his party and became the first president threatened with impeachment. Millard Fillmore succeeded esteemed General Zachary Taylor. He immediately sacked the entire cabinet and delayed an inevitable Civil War by standing with Henry Clay’s compromise of 1850. Andrew Johnson, who succeeded our greatest president, sided with remnants of the Confederacy in Reconstruction. Chester Arthur, the embodiment of the spoils system, was so reviled as James Garfield’s successor that he had to defend himself against plotting Garfield’s assassination; but he reformed the civil service. Theodore Roosevelt broke up the trusts. Calvin Coolidge silently cooled down the Harding scandals and preserved the White House for the Republican Herbert Hoover and the Great Depression. Harry Truman surprised everybody when he succeeded the great FDR and proved an able and accomplished president. Lyndon B. Johnson was named to deliver Texas electorally. He led the nation forward on Civil Rights but failed on Vietnam.
Accidental Presidents shows that “history unfolds in death as well as in life” (The Wall Street Journal) and adds immeasurably to our understanding of the power and limits of the American presidency in critical times.
In an unparalleled collaboration, two leading global thinkers in technology and foreign affairs give us their widely anticipated, transformational vision of the future: a world where everyone is connected—a world full of challenges and benefits that are ours to meet and to harness.
Eric Schmidt is one of Silicon Valley’s great leaders, having taken Google from a small startup to one of the world’s most influential companies. Jared Cohen is the director of Google Ideas and a former adviser to secretaries of state Condoleezza Rice and Hillary Clinton. With their combined knowledge and experiences, the authors are uniquely positioned to take on some of the toughest questions about our future: Who will be more powerful in the future, the citizen or the state? Will technology make terrorism easier or harder to carry out? What is the relationship between privacy and security, and how much will we have to give up to be part of the new digital age?
In this groundbreaking book, Schmidt and Cohen combine observation and insight to outline the promise and peril awaiting us in the coming decades. At once pragmatic and inspirational, this is a forward-thinking account of where our world is headed and what this means for people, states and businesses.
With the confidence and clarity of visionaries, Schmidt and Cohen illustrate just how much we have to look forward to—and beware of—as the greatest information and technology revolution in human history continues to evolve. On individual, community and state levels, across every geographical and socioeconomic spectrum, they reveal the dramatic developments—good and bad—that will transform both our everyday lives and our understanding of self and society, as technology advances and our virtual identities become more and more fundamentally real.
As Schmidt and Cohen’s nuanced vision of the near future unfolds, an urban professional takes his driverless car to work, attends meetings via hologram and dispenses housekeeping robots by voice; a Congolese fisherwoman uses her smart phone to monitor market demand and coordinate sales (saving on costly refrigeration and preventing overfishing); the potential arises for “virtual statehood” and “Internet asylum” to liberate political dissidents and oppressed minorities, but also for tech-savvy autocracies (and perhaps democracies) to exploit their citizens’ mobile devices for ever more ubiquitous surveillance. Along the way, we meet a cadre of international figures—including Julian Assange—who explain their own visions of our technology-saturated future.
Inspiring, provocative and absorbing, The New Digital Age is a brilliant analysis of how our hyper-connected world will soon look, from two of our most prescient and informed public thinkers.
In 2004, Jared Cohen embarked on the first of a series of incredible journeys to the Middle East in an effort to understand the spread of radical Islamist violence among Muslim youth. The result is Children of Jihad, a portrait of paradox that probes much deeper than any journalist or pundit ever could.
Chosen as one of Kirkus Review's Best Books of 2007, Cohen's account begins in Lebanon, where he interviews Hezbollah members at, of all places, a McDonald's. In Iran, he defies government threats and sneaks into underground parties, where bootleg liquor, Western music, and the Internet are all easy to access. His risky itinerary also takes him to a Palestinian refugee camp in southern Lebanon, borderlands in Syria, the insurgency hotbed of Mosul, and other front-line locales. At each turn, he observes a culture at an uncanny crossroads. Gripping and daring, Children of Jihad shows us the future through the eyes of those who are shaping it.