John Hancock

Senior Counsellor at the World Trade Organization

John Hancock works at the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, where he has served as senior policy advisor to the Director-General, representative to the IMF and World Bank, and head of investment issues. He also coordinated the WTO's Aid-for-Trade initiative, and was secretary of the 2006 Task Force on the subject. Prior to the WTO, Mr. Hancock was senior advisor to Canada's trade minister. He has also been a guest lecturer at Cambridge University, IMD, and the University of St Gallen. He holds a PhD in economic history from Cambridge, and has written and spoken frequently on international issues.

Most Recent Posts

Thick as BRICS

Thick as BRICS

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March 27, 2013

John Hancock on why the BRICS Summit is a meeting of rivals more than allies.

1930s Redux?

1930s Redux?

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February 13, 2013

John Hancock on why the parallels between the economy of the 1930s and the economy today are becoming hard to ignore.

War or Peace

War or Peace

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November 23, 2011

China’s economy will overtake that of the U.S. in 5 years. “Do dollars equal tanks?” Hancock wonders.

Power to the People

Power to the People

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November 11, 2011

Does globalization hijack democratic choice or thrive on it? Hancock asks, as Grecians protest.

The Great Confusion

The Great Confusion

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September 23, 2011

John Hancock advises that the one certainty about today’s economy is its subjection to technological change.

An Orderly Anarchy

An Orderly Anarchy

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September 6, 2011

If the United States no longer runs the world—as most 9/11 retrospectives grimly conclude—who will take its place? Some predict a fast-rising China will soon dominate. Others foresee a period of rivalry and conflict among great-power equals. Yet, for the moment, what’s striking about the international scene is not the struggle for world domination, but […]

Irrational Pessimism

Irrational Pessimism

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August 13, 2011

Chaotic stock markets, spiralling debt crises, weakening growth, rioting in the streets – the steady drum beat of bad news has been so overwhelming lately that it’s easy to forget that we are likely entering the most dramatic period of material progress in human history. Even amid the current gloom and doom, the International Monetary […]

JB Rules. For Now.

JB Rules. For Now.

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July 25, 2011

Mao Tse-tung famously observed that “power grows out of the barrel of a gun.” But today power is more likely to grow out of the barrel of a television camera. Or a YouTube video. Or even a tweet. Ask yourself this: Who is the most globally influential Canadian?  My vote – like millions of others […]

It’s getting harder to run the world – so spare some sympathy for the French.

It’s getting harder to run the world – so spare some sympathy for the French.

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July 6, 2011

Christine Lagarde, recently French Finance Minister, has finally been confirmed as IMF head – but not without having to beat back challenges from pesky upstarts like Mexico, Singapore, and India – and following the trials (literally) and tribulations of former French head, Dominique Straus Khan. Then there’s poor Jean-Claud Trichet, the Frenchman in charge the […]

Peace Can Be Dangerous

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June 20, 2011

I feel privileged to be in such creative company—and really look forward to seeing what our roundtable dialogue produces. I also feel a little guilty discussing Canadian foreign policy because I’m a long-term exile – having spent almost fifteen years working at the Geneva-based WTO, as well as with the IMF and the World Bank. […]