Place Your Bets!

I was just waiting for this to pop up…

  Latest Odds
Bill Clinton (USA) 5-2
Surakiart Sathirathai (Thailand) 5-2
Ashraf Ghani (Afghanistan) 5-1
Aleksander Kwasniewski (Poland) 6-1
Aung San Suu Kyi (Burma) 12-1
Anwar Ibrahim (Malaysia) 15-1
Vaclav Havel (Czech Republic) 25-1
Nelson Mandela (South Africa) 25-1 is now taking wagers on the next SG!

According to their press release, “there is rampant speculation that Annan’s successor will be a political heavyweight with international clout. According to UN insiders, the list of names being floated in diplomatic circles includes current and former presidents, Nobel Prize winners and champions of human rights.”

This goes against history, of course, as most of the SGs to date have been dark horse candidates from small or middle powers. And other than Bill Clinton, I’m not sure their own odds really reflect this bold statement.

Just harmless fun, anyway, eh? Maybe and maybe not. Here’s a wealth of information from the AEI-Brookings Institution Joint Center on Regulatory Studies on the subject of “policy futures” – markets that allow speculators to buy and sell contracts based on their expectations regarding the outcome of an uncertain future event.

Ante up, anyone?

2 Responses to “Place Your Bets!”

  1. dracobs says:

    How come this hasn’t been updated even if the odds have? As you state, policy futures are not completely void of sense – and bookie odds may be an ok proxy for these. The new odds are below.

    Why is Ashraf Ghani not mentioned in either of the categories of candidates? still has him riding 12-1. There are good reasons to consider him an qualified candidate, even if he is not officially in the fray yet. See e.g.:

    The odds as of today are:

    Ban Ki-Moon (South Korea) 5-2
    Surakiart Sathirathai (Thailand 5-2
    Jayantha Dhanapala (Sri Lanka) 7-2
    Anwar Ibrahim (Malaysia) 8-1
    Bill Clinton (USA) 10-1
    Aleksander Kwasniewski (Poland) 10-1
    Ashraf Ghani (Afghan.) 12-1
    Aung San Suu Kyi (Burma) 12-1
    Nelson Mandela (South Africa) 25-1
    Vaclav Havel (Czech Republic) 25-1

  2. […] Last January, posted odds on candidates for the next UNSG. While an amusing exercise, it’s doubtful an accurate measure of the campaigns. Nonetheless, a regular reader (thanks, dracobs!) commented that an updated look at the odds might be of interest. […]

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