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Saturday, April 14, 2012

George Soros on The Future of Europe

April 13, 2012 : George Soros, Chair of Soros Fund Management at the panel entitled "The Future of Europe" at the Institute for New Economic Thinking's (INET) Paradigm Lost Conference in Berlin. Soros discusses his general theory of reflexivity and its application to financial markets, providing insights into the recent financial crisis. The third and fourth lectures examine the concept of open society, which has guided Soros's global philanthropy, as well as the potential for conflict between capitalism and open society. The closing lecture focuses on the way ahead, examining the increasingly important economic and political role that China will play in the future.

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George Soros was born in Budapest, Hungary, in 1930. His father was taken prisoner during World War I and eventually fled from captivity in Russia to reunite with his family in Budapest. Soros was thirteen years old when Hitler's Wehrmacht seized Hungary and began deporting the country's Jews to extermination camps. In 1946, as the Soviet Union was taking control of the country, Soros attended a conference in the West and defected. He emigrated in 1947 to England, supported himself by working as a railroad porter and a restaurant waiter, graduated in 1952 from the London School of Economics, and obtained an entry-level position with an investment bank.

In 1956, Soros immigrated to the United States, working as a trader and analyst until 1963. During that time, he developed his own theory of markets called 'reflexivity', which he has laid out in his recent books THE ALCHEMY OF FINANCE and THE CREDIT CRISIS OF 2008 AND WHAT IT MEANS. In 1967 he helped establish an offshore investment fund; and in 1973 he set up a private investment firm that eventually evolved into the Quantum Fund, one of the first hedge funds, through which he accumulated a vast fortune.