I always look forward to The Economist’s great yearly publication, The World in…In recent years, a web component has been added. The World in 2012 gives us a great head start on the year ahead. The 162-page magazine has a number of thought-provoking articles in such editorial categories as the United States, Asia, Middle East and Africa, Europe, Business, Science and Culture. Unlike in The Economist itself, the articles have bylines; some from Economist writers and editors, but many from high-profile guest contributors. In the latter category, you’ll find Aung San Suu Kyi writing on “A Sense of Balance,” Nandan Nilekani on “India’s identity revolution,” and Sheryl Sandberg of Facebook, on “Sharing to the power of 2012.”

The site for TWI2012 also has a blog, Cassandra, and links for previous years of The World in, going back to 2004. As cool and convenient as the website is, I still find the glossy print edition to be handy and valuable, especially for the quick, concise references in the 15 page “The world in figures” section. No matter how all the predictions for the coming year pan out, reading this publication will make you feel smarter and more well-informed.