The transformation of the BRIC acronym from an investment term into a household name of international politics and into a semi-institutionalized political outfit (called BRICS, with a capital 'S'), is one of the defining developments in international politics in the past decades. While the concept is now commonly used in the general public debate and international media, there has not yet been a comprehensive and scholarly analysis of the history of the BRICS term. offers a definitive reference history of the BRICS as a term and as an institution-a chronological narrative and analytical account of the BRICS concept from its inception in 2001 to the political grouping it is today. In addition, it analyzes what the rise of powers like Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa means for the future of global order. Will the BRICS countries seek to establish a parallel system with its own distinctive set of rules, institutions, and currencies of power, rejecting key tenets of liberal internationalism, are will they seek to embrace the rules and norms that define today's Western-led order?