Mona Sutphen served as Deputy Chief of Staff to President Obama and has spent over 20 years working with Fortune 500 multinationals and institutional investors on the intersection of geopolitics, policy and markets. She offers essential insights for business leaders navigating complex risks across the global landscape.
Mona Sutphen has served as a trusted aide and senior advisor to two Presidents, as Deputy Chief of Staff to President Obama and on the staff of the National Security Council during the Clinton Administration.
Ms. Sutphen has spent over 20 years working for and advising Fortune 500 multinational companies and institutional investors on the intersection of geopolitics and markets, covering key issues including trade, the geopolitics of energy, sanctions, technology regulatory/political dynamics, US policy and regulation and US politics. She was a Managing Director at UBS AG, a partner at boutique advisory firm Macro Advisory Partners, and earlier in her career, she was a diplomat, serving in Asia, Europe and the United Nations.
Ms. Sutphen is on the Board of Pioneer Natural Resources and serves on several non-profit boards. is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and was co-author of The Next American Century. She holds a BA from Mount Holyoke and an MSc from LSE.
The Global Battle for "Digital Property"
Drawing on her experience advising leading Silicon Valley players and start-up tech firms, Mona Sutphen understands that the competition for cutting edge technology and intellectual property has extended from market players – and now too in the political and regulatory arena. She paints a vivid picture of the impact from the global clash over the future of the digital commons and associated economic power, which will impact all aspects of the global economy.
Weaponization of Financial Markets
Drawing on her experience managing global capital market risks, Mona Sutphen discusses how financial sanctions and investment restrictions have emerged as the ‘go to’ US policy tool and will remain a feature of the policy landscape. She explains how the combination of a tighter regulatory regime and demands for greater transparency will make compliance increasingly difficult and costly for global financial institutions, including in the private equity world.
The Implications of US Shale
The geopolitics of energy are being turned on their head because of the juggernaut of US shale technology. With the US now the world’s largest oil producer, the rest of the world has begun to anticipate consequences for US foreign policy – especially in the Middle East, even if this reality has yet to settle into America’s consciousness. Mona Sutphen uses her expertise in geopolitics and the Permian to examine why the US ability to innovate and rapidly adopt new technologies in fossil fuels and renewables will continue to create a world of energy ‘haves’ and ‘have nots’; and further predicts the massive, cascading consequences for markets and geopolitics.
Changing Incentives on Trade
The world is seeing a retreat of the ‘rules-based’ trading order, even as global trade activity itself remains healthy. As the move to the digital economy gains momentum, the US ‘pro-trade’ political constituencies are less powerful, while major trading partners are scrambling to develop alternative markets in anticipation of a US retreat from defensing the multilateral trading regime. Mona Sutphen sees this trend as already having major consequences for US companies that rely on export markets for growth and draws on her experience in geopolitics and the financial markets to explain why this is likely to be a source of tension for the foreseeable future, especially in the case of China.
Founding Director of the Center for Sports Leadership and Innovation (CSLi) at the University of Texas
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