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The twenty-first century will see major disruptions to the global balance of politico-economic power. China will soon become the world’s largest economy; India is another rising giant. These and other developments – including growing inequality in several major economies – contest the Western institutional model of economic development and mount new institutional challenges at the global level.

There is a recognised need for new or enhanced international orders, to sustain peace and international trade, as well as to address the problem of climate change. Meanwhile, an extended period of global integration has fuelled local discontent and led to a rise of nationalism and separatism. The international challenges of the twenty-first century place institutional development and reform at the top of the agenda.

Organised in collaboration with the Faculty of Law of the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK), the Fifth WINIR Conference explored these institutional challenges. Contributions from any academic discipline or theoretical approach that address the challenges and dynamics of the economic, political, legal and social institutions of our time were welcome. Submissions on other aspects of institutional research were also welcome, with preference given to those that relate to WINIR’s aims and research priorities.

The initial plan was to open the conference with an informal get-together in the Central district of Hong Kong on the evening of Friday 14 September 2018 and to end the conference with a dinner on the evening of Sunday 16 September. This plan was derailed by Typhoon Mangkhut, which hit Hong Kong on the Sunday. This unexpected, dramatic event led to a reorganisation of the conference: all sessions were held on the Saturday.

Keynotes lectures were given by:

Justin Yifu Lin (National School of Development, Peking University, China)
Chenggang Xu (Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business, China)

The conference also featured a special panel on “Blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies” organised by Aleksander Stojanovic as part of the INET Young Scholars’ Initiative.

Despite the typhoon, 91 delegates from 24 countries attended the event.

The conference was organised by:
David Donald (, Francesca Gagliardi (, David Gindis (, Geoff Hodgson (, Klaus Nielsen (, Katharina Pistor (

Event manager: Vinny Logan (

The WINIR Conference on Institutions & the Future of Capitalism benefited from the generous support of

 Generous support was also provided by