I also absolutely love history, and want to share that passion with as wide an audience as possible. 

I don’t just think history has the best, most exciting, dramatic stories ever told, I think they’re also our best guide to help us make sense of the modern world and all its complexities. History matters.

But politics is a closed book - a country’s power in relation to its friends and rivals is one of the last mysteries. 

We need to find out why. Why do countries become more powerful than others? 

A leader takes over a country. He talks of its glorious past and its magical future. You believe him. You want your country to top every league table it can.

But maybe you think he's a charlatan who will take his country down, you’re sure of it. 

The leader says he wants his country to be the world-beating number one nation. 

Great, but one problem. The world we grew up in is coming to an end. 

Imagine living at the same time after Napoleon, the Kaiser, Hitler, the fall of the Berlin Wall when the world order was overturned and a new way of life begun. 

Well, that's now. 

Every thirty years or so a battle is fought for the future

No-one, literally no-one, is grasping the truth that once every 100 years the countries who run the world change. There was the Spanish century, the French century, the British century, the American century, now we face the Chinese century. 

All were epic struggles and all needed a once-in-a-century bloodbath to separate the winners from the losers. Spain by France. France by Britain. Germany by Britain, America and Russia. Russia by America. America by China. And so it goes. The ongoing War for the World.

Ideas lead to events which change history. We live in a so-called inter-epoch where the balance of power is changing again. 

We are now in the third post-war era: Labour and the unions after 1945, Conservative and business after 1979, international finance after Brexit.

All were political earthquakes reshaping the way Britain and its people behave, how we feel about ourselves and how the world feels about us.

But these era battles are bit players in a bigger picture. Every century a crisis arises not only to control the state but to change it and the way the world is run.

This is where we are today.

We're at the beginning of a new era – and a new epoch - in history.  

A new battle for power is underway.

With what we're doing we can all become investors in our own era, judging which leader is winning, which is losing and more importantly the what, who, how, why and where of it because we can track their position up and down the league table of global power. 

Yes, but first we need to know the rules of the game.

And how smart the leaders who play it are.

First thing to know is that there have been SIX POWER EPOCHS

In his book, “The Shield of Achilles” Professor Philip Bobbitt, identified the historical forces that had caused the epochal wars that sliced our history into six power wars or epochs. 

It’s happened in the early decades of each of the last five centuries.  Fear of failure required leaders to seek control over their destiny. First over their faith, then their land, their state, their people, their people’s minds and finally their wallets.

The Spanish century, the French century, the British century, the American century, and now the Chinese century were epochal world-changing power struggles which disrupted the nature of states, their wealth and their people. 

Rulers fought to win the battle over ideas, forcing events to convert winning ideas into actions and, finally, impose by law and violence inevitable change to people’s ways of life. 

These events set the rules of the world for decades. But all were preceded by major international turbulence and wars. 

All ended with new world orders, new epochs, entrenched in law by the Treaties of Augsburg (1555), Westphalia (1648), Utrecht (1713), Vienna (1815), Versailles (1918), and Paris (1990).  All of these treaties confirmed the victory of a nation and an idea about how people are governed.

And since 1500, almost symmetrically, these new rules gave birth to new states forged in the strategic, technological and constitutional consequences of the battle to survive: Augsburg created the princely state; Westphalia, the kingly state; Utrecht, the territorial state; Vienna, the state nation; Versailles, the nation state; Paris, the new globalised world of market states. 

This is how history moves. In one hundred year cycles. We are now entering the 6th “market state” epoch.

All of these countries, Spain, France, Britain and the US, seized their moment and changed the world. How did they do it?

They supercharged their country’s power.

So, the second thing to know is that there are TWO POWERS

In his essay "Get Smart: Combining Hard and Soft Power" Professor Joseph Nye created an iron law called smart power.

Hard power is the stick, the mix of cash and threats to get your way. Soft power is the carrot, getting your way through persuasion without force. 

Smart Power enables a grand strategy solution for a country to succeed by understanding past successes, present dangers and future options.

The rise and fall of nations can be calculated on how well or badly they use the smart power to get what they want and empower their citizens.

But how do they use smart power?

The third thing to know is that there are SEVEN POWER APPS
Smart Power comprises seven components - seven powerapps. –

  • Military power
  • Economic power
  • State power
  • Energy power
  • People power
  • Cultural power
  • Diplomatic power

To win their epoch or era, rulers apply the power apps to win the war of the world.

And we are going to apply smart power to judge who is winning or losing the battle to make their country great. 

It happens every century. 

We're here again.

And the question is who is going to win? 

Well, as of now, we have no idea. Because the goals countries score, the games they win, the trophies they seek have no league table. 

It’s a bit weird frankly.

After all, Charles Dow created the first stock market index way back in 1885. William MacGregor devised the first football league table in 1888. But no-one has thought of a real-time league of nations before. 

How can Britain’s future – our place in the world – be judged if nobody can see how Britain is doing? Leaders and politicians, media and all of us must be able to tell whether the decisions of the politicians win Britain more games than she loses in the Champions League of international power?