Jacques Attali is a leading French economist, author, businessman and government adviser.
He was the first President of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). Under his leadership it promoted investments which aimed to protect nuclear power plants and the environment, develop infrastructure and reinforce private sector competitiveness. He is also President and founder of PlaNet Finance, a leading non-profit organisation which is active in more than 80 countries and provides funding, technical assistance and advisory services to 10,000 micro-finance players and stakeholders. Since 2012 he has been a member of the supervisory board of Kepler Capital Markets, a Swiss broker based in Geneva.
He led François Mitterand's campaign for Presidential election in 1974 and 1981. Once elected, Mitterand named Attali as his special adviser, and entrusted him with the role of "sherpa" (personal representative to a head of state) for the G7 summits. Later in 1985 he co-founded the European programme EUREKA, a European inter-governmental programme for new technologies, which developed, among other things, the MP3. Between 2008 and 2010 he also led a government committee on how to stimulate growth in the French economy.
Attali is a frequent speaker and in regular demand as a commentator on current affairs by the global media. Foreign Policy Magazine included Attali in the Top 100 'global thinkers' in the World in 2009. He is the author of over fifty books on topics ranging from economics to music, translated into more than twenty languages. His main work in economics and sociology has examined trends in human history and their use in forecasting the future. In his influential book Millennium, Attali created the concept of a “nomad society” to characterise the nature of future civilisation. It inspired the creation of the Java programming language by Bill Joy and John Gage at Sun Microsystems.