Resetting the balance of power
The north-eastern United States is the place to be this week if you're a world leader.
Then the leaders of the G20 nations go on to Pittsburgh for another summit on how to restore the global economy to health and prevent a repetition of last year's financial crisis.
The rapid emergence of the G20 - the world's 19 biggest economies plus the European Union - as the organisation making the key decisions on the global economy is really an acceleration of a shift in the global balance of power that has been taking place over the past decade.
The rapid economic growth of China - which is set to overtake Japan as the world's second largest economy - as well as India and Brazil, and the stabilisation of the Russian economy on the back of higher energy prices, means the relative power of these countries has increased at the expense of the established economic power houses of the United States and the European Union.
This shift was highlighted by an apparently amused Brazilian President, Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, who was quoted following the last G20 summit in London in April, saying "Don't you find it very chic that Brazil is lending to the IMF? I spent part of my youth carrying banners against the IMF in downtown Sao Paulo".
President Lula, a former trade union leader, was referring to the period a few decades ago when Brazil faced a debt crisis and was dependent on IMF loans. Now Brazil is contributing to the IMF to help stabilise the world economy.
In addition to the new central role of the G20, over the past few months we have also seen the US and Russia making up after their serious falling out over missile defence in Europe, the expansion of NATO and Russia's brief war with Georgia just over a year ago. What the Americans have called 'pressing the reset button'.
The question we're considering on the World Tonight this week is to what extent these dramatic changes are a direct result of the financial crisis and the deep recession that has struck the developed world and spread around the globe?
In a special edition of the programme on Wednesday broadcast from the prestigious American think-tank, the Council on Foreign Relations, Ritula Shah will be asking a panel of experts from the council to what extent the convulsions in the world economy have caused the shift in the balance of power and whether the change is permanent.
Alistair Burnett is the editor of The World Tonight.