The “Global Trends 2030” report is generally upbeat about the future. It foresees more individual empowerment, a growing middle class, better health care, and a world order in which the United States learns to better share power (assuming China plays along). It sees Islamic terrorism fading away.
Like many forecasts of global trends, it focuses strongly on material conditions more than the advance of ideas. It sees worrisome urbanization, with nearly 60 percent of the world’s population living in cities by 2030. Demand for “food, water, and energy will grow by approximately 35, 40, and 50 percent respectively,” the report states with presumed precision. “Many countries probably won’t have the wherewithal to avoid food and water shortages without massive help from outside.” At least 15 countries are “at high risk of state failure” by 2030.
These quadrennial reports are useful, up to a point, if they are constantly revised with new information. Most of all, they rely too heavily on experts without also tapping into the wider wisdom within society.
Read it all.
Posted December 14, 2012 at 5:00 am
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