Alice Amsden was educated at Cornell University (BSc) and at the London School of Economics (MSc and PhD). After working in Europe and Africa early in her career, she occupied various positions at prestigious American universities (UCLA, Columbia, Harvard Business School, New School) and more recently MIT in Cambridge, Massachussetts, where she has been the Barton L. Weller Professor of Political Economy since 2001. She is also active in various academic andUNnetworks. Alice Amsden is mostly known for her innovative work on industrial development in developing countries— especially her book Asia’s Next Giant: South Korea and Late Industrialization (1989), which made her a widely known specialist on industrialization processes. This is an issue which she revisited in her book The Rise of ‘the Rest’: Challenges to the West from Late Industrializing Economies (2001). She also made the Honour Roll of the Scientific American magazine in 2002 and became one of fifty visionaries chosen ‘from the worlds of research, industry and politics whose recent accomplishments point towards a brighter future’. In her latest book, Escape from Empire: The Developing World’s Journey through Heaven and Hell (2007), she argues that the more freedom developing countries have to set their own policies, the faster they grow.