The world is at the dawn of a new era and over the next 20 years, it will witness a complete shift in the global balance of power to the detriment of the West unless this change is met with a comprehensive response in the shortest possible time.
Undoubtedly a daring attempt, yet one that can be justified, as this transition can be traced back to five developments:
1.) Dealing with technological progress (e.g. digitization, biotechnology, human optimization)
The world stands on the brink of a new technological age. The changes involved will be just as radical as the industrial revolution of the 19th century.
Whilst digitalization and renewable energies have already gained widespread attention, other fields, such as biotechnological advances, performance enhancing implants, new medical or genetic possibilities, or AI, are usually only reported to a limited extent and more often than not in a negative context.
Just as often the prerequisites for using the new possibilities to the benefit of people in their everyday lives are missing out on the great debate. Is the Western society really fully prepared for the new age? Can the environment accommodate this? Are there appropriate infrastructures?
This may be contested and not every competitor takes the liberty of this negligence. An oversight that could be paid dearly as it culminates in an almost incurable backlog. A better future is gambled away.
2.) The rise of new competitors on the world markets (e.g. Asian states)
Technological progress is inextricably linked to the rise and fall of global powers. The last decades have seen an unprecedented boom in China, and other Asian countries, such as Singapore, also display advances that can only evoke astonishment in many Europeans, who have hitherto regarded their technical standards as the navel of the world.
It does not take extreme naivety to predict that this constellation will inevitably lead to extreme conflicts. At stake is not only market share, competition and the prosperity of the western world, but also which systems will prevail in the future: That of freedom or that of authority.
What is our approach to this struggle for existence, which goes far beyond the question of a better mobile phone with even better functions? Germany in particular thrives on exports and its good products. How much longer?
Power on the planet is being redistributed and once again everything is at stake: it’s about nothing less than bare existence.
3.) The weakness of the western world (e.g. through instability, dwindling confidence in existing orders, loss of competitiveness or the political rise of China)
Parallel to the rise of new powers, the West is staggering from crisis to crisis. The forerunners of the coming struggle for existence are already leaving behind their first traces. Societies are fragmented. The political systems are becoming more unstable or completely new players are stepping onto the field. Trust in the old elites is lost or already lost. Not without good reason, because weren’t they the ones who ignored or even brought about the current situation? How can they be the solutions?
The age of individual collectivism is over and a transition into collective individualism is underway, which will be accompanied by a fierce milieu struggle.
The infrastructure is partially dilapidated and it would be nice to be able to fix this only at Internet reception, but this is only one, albeit more representative, of many aspects of an entire sea of problems that have never been addressed and always only deferred into the future.
Is the West competitive enough to face the coming storm? Are individual countries? Perhaps. Are they all? No, certainly not.
4.) Changes in environmental conditions (e.g. through climate change, resource exploitation or environmental degradation)
In addition to the global shifts in power relations, the planet is also undergoing upheavals that will affect human coexistence to an unknown extent. It is futile however to argue about what part man has in it, because things happen. They happen and they work. All this makes finger-pointing completely irrelevant, for even egoism alone and the natural urge for self-preservation compel us to confront the great issues of our time and strive for solutions.
5.) Through overpopulation and lack of perspectives (e.g. through demographic development on the African continent)
Migration has become a major concern and will intensify in the coming decades. Looking alone at the forecasts of a doubling of the population of Africa by 2050 and taking into account the shifting power relations and environmental influences, at the end of the day it becomes clear that the great migrations of peoples have only just begun.
Counteracting them, which so far only consists of the platitudinous phrase “Fighting the causes of flight”, will bring no change to the future. It only serves to calm and postpone urgently needed actions into an unknown future, which will be characterized by its adherence to the “too late” label.
These are the five key challenges of the present and the future. Because they are interdependent and influence each other, it makes sense to summarize them under the term “Change of Time”.
The Western world is not prepared for this Change of Time or is trying to confront it with methods, ideas and measures of the past that have long since lost their effectiveness. An old, long obsolete way of thinking and a senseless undertaking, as the failed past is no match for this mighty storm, but needs new ideas and impartial minds in order not to be washed away by the tide, but perhaps even to ride on its waves.
It is in this light that the Erich von Werner Society, a think tank, is striving to develop new ways of shaping and solving global problems, in order to at least provide impetus. One of these is the Model of Alternative Hegemony (AH Model). The Model of Alternative hegemony (AH Model) is an evolution of the previous international political and economic system. It develops this model further, retains existing structures and diverts negative dynamics.
The AH Model nurtures states as well as companies to behave in a way that retains value. It rewards this behaviour and sanctions negative deviations. These incentives make positive behavior profitable and sustainable.
The AH Model harnesses the same forces that prevail in a capitalist system, but leads them in a new direction: the invisible hand of the market becomes the invisible hand of education.
More about this on the official website of the Erich von Werner Society: www.understandandchange.com
The AH Model proves that there can be new and fresh impulses and that it is not the obsolete solutions of the 19th century that have to be adapted by force to the problems of the 21st century and yet will never fit. For a successful implementation, however, many voices are needed, which should be heard now in order to be able to take over the initiative.
The Alternative Hegemony Model is not a conceptual experiment, but a necessity in order to meet the challenges and counter the storm tide of change, which will be swept away by the current world order.
Each day of waiting makes the situation more complicated, hence now is the time to take action. It is about the spark that should ignite the fire. It is about inspiration, because one thing is already certain today:
An era of ignorance, euphoria and beautification is coming to an end. The Change of Time is already taking effect and stands just outside the door waiting. It is up to us to get ready for this guest. In any case he will come and will be here to stay.
A possible solution would be the Alternative Hegemony Model.
For more information, visit: www.understandandchange.com
Company Name: Erich von Werner Society
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