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Geopolitics (World Power Transition)

 

 

Global trends 2030: alternative worlds

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Saturday, December 1, 2012
Abstract in English: 
The National Intelligence Council's (NIC) Global Trends Report engages expertise from outside government on factors of such as globalization, demography and the environment, producing a forward-looking document to aid policymakers in their long term planning on key issues of worldwide importance.Since the first report was released in 1997, the audience for each Global Trends report has expanded, generating more interest and reaching a broader audience that the one that preceded it. A new Global Trends report is published every four years following the U.S. presidential election.
Global Trends 2030 is intended to stimulate thinking about the rapid and vast geopolitical changes characterizing the world today and possible global trajectories over the next 15 years. As with the NIC’s previous Global Trends reports, NIC does not seek to predict the future—which would be an impossible feat—but instead provides a framework for thinking about possible futures and their implications.In-depth research, detailed modeling and a variety of analytical tools drawn from public, private and academic sources were employed in the production of Global Trends 2030. NIC leadership engaged with experts in nearly 20 countries—from think tanks, banks, government offices and business groups—to solicit reviews of the report.

The world is transforming at an unprecedented rate: it took Britain 155 years to double GDP per capita, with about 9 million people in 1870 . . . The US and Germany took between 30 and 60 years with a few tens of million people . . . but India and China are doing this at a scale and pace not seen before: 100 times the people than Britain and in one tenth the time. By 2030 Asia will be well on its way to returning to being the world’s powerhouse, just as it was before 1500.
But it is not totally back to the future: the world has been transformed in other ways. By 2030, majorities in most countries will be middle-class, not poor, which has been the condition of most people throughout human history.
Global population in urban areas is expanding quickly:
And the pace of technological change will accelerate: Absorption of new technologies by Americans has become much more rapid. The absorption rate in developing states is also quickening, allowing these states to leapfrog stages of development that advanced economies had to pass through.

This report is intended to stimulate thinking about this rapid, vast array of geopolitical, economic, and technological changes transforming our world today and their potential trajectories over the next 15-20 years. The NIC begins by identifying what it sees as the most important megatrends of our transforming world— individual empowerment, the diffusion of power to multifaceted networks and from West to East and South, demographic patterns highlighted by aging populations and exploding middle classes, and natural resource challenges. These megatrends are knowable. By themselves they point to a transformed world, but the world could transform itself in radically different ways. We are heading into uncharted waters. The NIC contends that the megatrends are interacting with six variables or game-changers that will determine what kind of transformed world we will inhabit in 2030. These game-changers—questions about the global economy, national and global governance, the nature of conflict, regional spillover, advancing technologies, and the United States’ role in the international arena—are the raw elements that could sow the seeds of global disruption or incredible advances. Based on what the NIC knows about the megatrends, and by positing the possible interactions between the megatrends and the game-changers, the NIC envisions four potential worlds. At one end of the spectrum is a Stalled Engines world in which the risks of interstate conflict increase and the US retrenches. At the other extreme is a newly rebalanced and Fused world in which social, economic, technological, and political progress is widespread. In the middle are two other
possibilities: a Gini-Out-of-the-Bottle world in which inequalities dominate or a Nonstate World in which nonstate actors flourish both for good and ill. None of these outcomes is inevitable. The future world order will be shaped by human agency as much as unfolding trends and unanticipated events. In describing potential futures, the NIC identifies inflection points as well as opportunities and risks to help readers think about strategies for influencing the world’s trajectory.
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Afghanistan 2011-2014 and Beyond: From Support Operations to Sustainable Peace

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Abstract in English: 
There is a general sense of urgency among experts regarding the situation in Afghanistan. The period of transition that is currently underway is seen as a last opportunity to create the necessary conditions for transforming international support in a way that reinforces a viable democratic state. The key lies in transforming what is basically a foreign military operation into a peace building operation led by the Afghan government and the UN backed by international support, including military support if necessary, but always subordinate to civilian authorities. Thus, as ISAF scales down, the EU and the US must work closely and intensively together, starting with supporting a strengthening of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), along the following lines.
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Russia: Insights from a Changing Country

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Abstract in English: 
The mass protests in Moscow and other Russian cities after the parliamentary elections on 4 December 2011 shattered long-standing assumptions about the Russian political system and the apathy of Russian society. They raise new questions about the evolution of Russian society and state-society relations. These are extremely serious issues not only for the protesters and external observers, but also for a Russian leadership whose legitimacy is at risk and who, in one way or another, will have to react to this vocal expression of discontent and demand for change. This EUISS Report features contributions from a group of Russian authors with outstanding expertise on important Russian domestic and foreign policy issues. They all contributed analytical papers to the Institute’s ‘Russia Insights’ series, which were published online during the weeks before the parliamentary and presidential elections. Therefore, some of the papers where written before and some after the public protests started. Together, they provide valuable insights into Russian politics and society and into the country’s economic system as well as into Russia’s foreign policy posture. The result is a very complex picture combining elements of dynamism, stasis and stagnation.
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Brussels - Beijing: Changing the Game?

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Friday, February 1, 2013
Abstract in English: 
The EUISS is pleased to present the final report prepared in the framework of the research project ‘Developing a comprehensive EU strategy towards China’, including the revised papers and commentaries that were presented at the expert meeting organised by the EU Institute for Security Studies in Paris on 11-12 October 2012. The aim of this project was to examine and assess EU policy towards China in the following fields: trade, investment, the euro and global economic governance, environment and resources, defence and security, politics, and the regional context. The report concludes that China represents a great opportunity but also a challenge for the EU. China is poised to become the EU’s most important commercial partner, while simultaneously being a serious challenger in trade and a competitor for resources. China also continues to be viewed with suspicion across Europe due to the non-democratic nature of the Chinese regime, raising questions as to what use the new leaders will make of their country’s increased capabilities. Yet, it is precisely this authoritarian Communist China, informed by values and principles quite different from those of the EU and its member states, that has come to support the EU’s integration process – including key initiatives such as the European common currency. There seems thus to be a dual and sometimes overlapping image of China across Europe: that of a rising power challenging the Old Continent’s values and standards of living; and that of an enormous opportunity for European companies and EU global aspirations. Given this situation, devising the right approach towards Beijing is possibly one of the greatest tasks currently facing the EU. In this vein, the contributions in this report offer a number of suggestions that could assist EU policymakers in developing a more coherent and strategic approach towards China.
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The European Union after the Treaty of Lisbon: Visions of Leading Policy-makers, Academics and Journalists

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Saturday, January 1, 2011
Abstract in English: 
On 25-26 May 2010, the Jean Monnet Programme organised a two-day Global Jean Monnet Conference entitled "The European Union after the Treaty of Lisbon". As has been a biennial tradition for more than a decade, the Global Jean Monnet Conference was joined by ECSA-World, i.e. the network of national European Community Studies Associations that are active world-wide. The Conference, which took place at the European Parliament, brought together 420 leading policy-makers, diplomats, renowned academics, journalists and civil society representatives from 69 countries. The Global Jean Monnet / ECSA-World Conference confirmed its reputation as "a platform to reflect on major policy developments and coming priorities" and provided an in-depth analysis of the impact of the Lisbon Treaty in four main areas: the EU's institutional balance and institutional co-operation, fundamental rights and EU citizenship, the new EU framework for confronting global economic challenges and the EU as an international political and security actor.
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Global Europe 2050

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Sunday, January 1, 2012
Abstract in English: 
We can rise to the Europe 2020 challenges of dealing with an ageing population, securing sustainable resources, developing clean energy supplies, improving healthcare and combating climate change – but only if we take effective short, medium and long term action. This is why the European Commission asked twenty five leading analysts to look into the future and work through a number of scenarios to see where the EU might be in 2050. Their work, presented in this Global Europe 2050 report, analyses three key scenarios which describe different but nonetheless possible pathways that Europe could choose to follow over the decades to come.
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Empowering Europe’s Future: Governance, Power and Options for the EU in a Changing World

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, December 5, 2013
Abstract in English: 
Looking to 2030, global change will be occurring at an accelerated pace in an unpredictable fashion. The world in 2030 will be a more fragile place due to the rise of economic interdependence, the diffusion of power, and the disruptive potential of technological innovation and extreme events. Ten years ago, for example, the SARS outbreak cost businesses $60 billion – and caused the loss of about 2% of East Asian GDP. Vulnerability to unexpected events – such as the 2010 Icelandic ash-cloud or the 2011 Japanese tsunami – will only increase as global supply chains expose states and societies to the effects of political crises and disruptions, even in distant regions. Weak or rigid governance systems will increasingly struggle to respond to these trends.
In this less predictable world, power shifts will not be linear, not least due to the proliferation of domestic challenges in emerging economies. Whether they are in relative rise or decline, the risk may be that many governments become more introverted and less inclined to international engagement and compromise, as they cope with increasing turbulence at home. Conversely, a faster-changing world will offer wide-ranging options and new opportunities to more actors – both state and non-state – who are flexible and quick enough to seize them. Cities may lead efforts to reduce carbon emissions; smaller states, like Sweden, Singapore or Qatar, may shape international agendas and regional affairs through the use of technical leadership or coalition-building. Power shifts will not necessarily be a zero-sum game; the gains of some need not entail losses for others.
Governments, regional organisations and international institutions will struggle to cope with the twin trends of increased interdependence and greater fragmentation. With a larger range of influential state and non-state actors, managing complexity and setting political agendas will become more challenging at both the domestic and international levels. This could result in a deficit of leadership and governance on the global stage. Future influence in international affairs will depend on how state and non-state actors deploy their respective power assets. As power becomes more diffuse, it will also become more constrained, which will put a premium on the ability to partner and build political coalitions.
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Global Governance 2025: at a Critical Junctur

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Monday, November 1, 2010
Abstract in English: 
Global governance – the collective management of common problems at the international level – is at a critical juncture. Although global governance institutions have racked up many successes since they were developed after the Second World War, the growing number of issues on the international agenda, and their complexity, is outpacing the ability of international organisations and national governments to cope. With the emergence of rapid globalisation, the risks to the international system have grown to the extent that formerly localised threats are no longer locally containable but are now potentially dangerous to global security and stability. At the beginning of the century, threats such as ethnic conflicts, infectious diseases, and terrorism as well as a new generation of global challenges including climate change, energy security, food and water scarcity, international migration flows and new technologies are increasingly taking centre stage.
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Megachange: The World in 2050

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Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Thursday, March 1, 2012
Abstract in English: 
"Megatrends" are great forces in societal development that have profound impacts on states, markets, and civil society in the now and for the years to come. They can effectively be employed as a starting point for analyzing our world. Megachange: The World in 2050 looks at these sweeping, fundamental trends that are changing the world faster than at any time in human history. Including chapters on approximately twenty of these "megatrends," each elegantly outlined by contributors from The Economist, and rich in supporting facts and graphics, the book is a compelling read as well as a valuable research and reference tool. Groups the "megatrends" that are shaping our world into several categories: People, Life and Death, Economy and Business, and Knowledge. Each trend is covered in a concise but detailed chapter written by an expert from The Economist. Packed with important information about the forces that shape our world, Megachange is a fascinating new look to the future from the experts at The Economist.
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Global Trends 2030: Citizens in an Interconnected and Polycentric World

Date of Editorial Board meeting: 
Publication date: 
Saturday, October 1, 2011
Abstract in English: 
This report, edited by Álvaro de Vasconcelos, contains the findings of the European Strategy and Policy Analysis System (ESPAS) research project. The EUISS was commissioned to produce the ESPAS Report on Global Trends 2030 by an EU inter-institutional task force. An interim version of this report was presented to the European Union in October 2011. The report identifies several global trends that will shape the world in 2030. They include: The empowerment of the individual, which may contribute to a growing sense of belonging to a single human community; Greater stress on sustainable development against a backdrop of greater resource scarcity and persistent poverty, compounded by the consequences of climate change; The emergence of a more polycentric world characterised by a shift of power away from states, and growing governance gaps as the mechanisms for inter-state relations fail to respond adequately to global public demands.
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