The trajectory of American politics, power and prestige: A conversation with Tom Friedman

Part of the series



19 August 2020




(Washington DC time: Tuesday, 18 August, 8.00-9.00pm EDT)


Free but registration is essential

2020 has thrown out the rule book for presidential election campaigning, tanked global economies, stoked international competition and suspicion and unleashed a hellish pandemic which has disrupted the whole world order. This will all culminate in a US presidential election which will likely be the most consequential in living memory, affecting the future course of America's democracy and the United States' role in the world for the next four years and beyond. What is the trajectory of American politics, power and prestige? How have the 2020 forces of disruption changed the future? What does this mean for Australia? 

To discuss these and other issues, USSC hosted a webinar event featuring Pulitzer prize winning author and New York Times journalist Thomas Friedman in conversation with United States Studies Centre Non-resident Senior Fellow Bruce Wolpe and CEO Professor Simon Jackman. 

Thomas L Friedman is an internationally renowned author, reporter, and columnist; recipient of three Pulitzer Prizes; and author of seven best-selling books: From Beirut to Jerusalem; The Lexus and the Olive Tree; Longitudes and Attitudes; The World Is Flat; Hot, Flat, and Crowded; That Used to Be Us, which he co-wrote with Michael Mandelbaum and Thank you For Being Late: An Optimist's Guide to Thriving in the Age of Accelerations, was updated and released 2017. Friedman’s foreign affairs column in The New York Times, which he has written since 1995, reports on US domestic politics and foreign policy, Middle East conflicts, international economics, environment, biodiversity, and energy. He has been with The New York Times since 1981. 


  • Bruce Wolpe
    Bruce Wolpe
    Non-Resident Senior Fellow, United States Studies Centre

    Bruce Wolpe is a Senior Fellow (non-resident) at the United States Studies Centre. Bruce is a regular contributor on US politics across media platforms in Australia. In recent years, Bruce has worked with the Democrats in Congress during President Barack Obama's first term, and on the staff of Prime Minister Julia Gillard. He has also served as the former PM's chief of staff.

  • Professor Simon Jackman
    Professor Simon Jackman

    Professor Simon Jackman was Chief Executive Officer of the United States Studies Centre from April 2016 to May 2022. Between 1996 and 2016, he was a Professor of Political Science and Statistics at Stanford University. Jackman's teaching and research centres on public opinion, election campaigns, political participation, and electoral systems with special emphasis on American and Australian politics.


Part of the series

Election Watch

Since 2008 the United States Studies Centre has been helping make sense of the US presidential elections with a series of events featuring Centre experts and visitors.

View all events in this series