How National Boundaries Distort Our Understanding of the World

Today's Most Pressing Global Issues Can't Be Addressed Through the Prism of Borders

Every four years, in summer and in winter, the Olympics open with a choreographed ceremony dominated by national delegations wearing national uniforms parading behind their respective national flags. Each event culminates in a medal ceremony that confers honors to the top three competitors, raises their national flags, and plays the national anthem of gold medal winners. The overall medal count has become a de facto Olympic competition pitting country against country for international prestige and bragging rights.

Similarly, the World Cup fuses sport and national identity on a quadrennial basis. …

Were Empires Better Than Nation-States at Managing Diversity?

By Respecting Local Cultures, Far-Flung Rulers Fostered Cooperation From Those They Subjected

Did empires actually serve to protect the diversity of their subjugated people? And if so, what lessons can they offer for the challenges facing modern states?

Answering these questions might begin …