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Government folks among top global thinkers

By Ed O'Keefe

Several government officials made this year's Foreign Policy Magazine 100 Global Thinkers List, which acknowledges the people with the big ideas of 2009. Agree or disagree with the names? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below:

#1 Ben Bernanke
For turning his superb academic career into a blueprint for action, for single-handedly reinventing the role of a central bank and for preventing the collapse of the U.S. economy.

#2 Barack Obama
He is an unapologetic wonk and a "radical incrementalist" who assesses, seeks advice, considers, seeks counsel again, and then tinkers.

#6 Hillary Rodham Clinton and Bill Clinton
The couple has solidified their status as the global power couple of all power couples.

#7 Cass Sunstein (tied with University of Chicago's Richard Thaler)
Their big idea -- to use small policy tweaks to overcome human capriciousness -- has turned the field of economics upside down and, most recently, won them Obama's ear. (Sunstein serves as administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs.)

#14 Larry Summers
The chief White House economics adviser is, put simply, one of his generation's finest economists, if not the very best.

#34 John Holdren and Steven Chu
The White House science czar and energy secretary have aggressively supported a reduction of American nuclear stockpiles and transformed his office into a bully pulpit, respectively.

#68 James Hansen
The director of NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies believes that facts don't speak for themselves.

#79 Anne-Marie Slaughter
The State Department's director of policy planning has stressed the importance of recognizing that the U.S. is an actor in a networked and disaggregated world, which needs to reach out to everyone from businesses to splinter groups.

#80 Samantha Power
The special assistant to the National Security Council has gone from critic to White House advisor, where she works on peacekeeping programs and resettling Iraqi refugees.

Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

By Ed O'Keefe  | November 30, 2009; 10:00 AM ET
Categories:  Administration  
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