Fareed Zakaria: A Post-American World in Progress

Why emerging powers didn't lead in 2011 and won't in the coming year

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In this week’s issue of TIME, editor-at-large Fareed Zakaria explains why a rising group of nations, including China, India, Brazil and Russia, have not had much effect outside their borders despite immense growth. Zakaria writes:

They continue to grow their economies, but they all face internal and external challenges that make them less interested and less capable of exercising power on an international or even regional scale.

And Zakaria, noting that “American influence is not what it used to be,” says that Washington isn’t well-equipped enough to fill in when these emerging economies falter.

Read the full column (free for TIME subscribers).