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Vision of world in 2030

Published by under Articles,Politics / Management categories on February 6, 2008

World and sun vision from orbiting satelliteThe Young Global Leaders (YGLs) of the World Economic Forum have published the findings of their “Future Mapping for the Global Agenda” study that draws a global picture in 2030 by mapping key trends, weak signals and their interrelationships, for a better understanding of how they will influence the global, regional and industry agendas.

The study presents a compilation of fact and figures, as predicted by international institutions and experts, and includes a series of opinion editorials from YGLs that provide various perspectives and challenge existing assumptions, as well as results from a survey of the community of 665 Young Global Leaders.

“We can start to comprehend and shape the future only by understanding the interconnection and interdependencies between the different challenges and key drivers influencing the global agenda,” said Klaus Schwab, Founder and Executive Chairman of the World Economic Forum. “’Future Mapping for the Global Agenda’ provides a valuable tool for a better understanding of how the leadership environment will change in the coming decades, and it will provide a framework for discussions at the YGL meeting during the upcoming World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos.”

“Future Mapping for the Global Agenda’ illustrates the pitfalls of prognosticating the future,” said YGL Paul Meyer, Chairman and President of Voxiva, “but as we look across a range of domains – health, technology, education, finance, environment – there do seem to be a few conclusions to safely draw.”
The survey findings indicate that all these issues require long-term, globally coordinated responses, which the current political/economic system does not support. Other key highlights from the YGL survey include:

– Most pressing issues in 2030: After global warming, which 59% of respondents believe will be the key challenge in 2030, depletion of resources (37%) and asymmetric warfare (27%) are considered the most pressing challenges in the next two decades.

– Powershifts I: While 69% of respondents believe that nation states will lose power until 2030, they will remain the most influential actors in addressing key challenges. 86% of YGLs see multinational corporations and individuals gaining power between now and 2030.
– Powershifts II: China is expected to be the leading nation state in 2030 (88%), followed by the US, India and Russia, with Germany, France and the United Kingdom significantly losing power.

– Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD): 64% believe that we will have experienced the use of weapons of mass destruction used by non-state actors by 2030.

– Emerging Change Agents: Some of the weak signals highlighted include: China buying into Blackstone, the increase in votes supporting extremist parties in Europe, fewer women wanting to work full time, individual wealth concentration and the fast rise of independent media in developing countries.

“I agree with two basic trends highlighted by the Young Global Leaders report”, says YGL Maria Bartiromo, Anchor, CNBC, “the income gap between countries will narrow and the global middle class will expand but with growing income inequality within countries; and more intra-state conflicts will occur”.

“As we look into the future of energy, a few trend lines are converging to create one of the most dramatic dislocations in history: the demand-driven, dramatic oil price increase, the carbon-based emission economy and the emergence of cheap cars in Asia. As we look at this scenario, working out the results of Asia’s demographic growth and urbanization effects, we realize the future mapping is a complex multidimensional effort. The Forum has tackled such complex intertwined scenarios which will give us all visibility and clarity as to our social, capital and technological roadmap to sustainable growth”, said YGL Shai Agassi, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Better.

The discussions on Future Mapping were initiated at the Young Global Leaders Inaugural Summit in 2005 with the development of a “Vision 2020” scenario (since extended to 2030) and the definition of the six key areas of concern for the future, including development & poverty, education, environment, global governance & security, health, and values & security. Since then, the initiative has been further developed to provide a platform for high-level discussions with leaders from business, media, politics and society about the future and the global, regional and industry agendas.

The entire study, the survey results and OpEds by YGLs can be downloaded here:


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