U.S. Intelligence Agencies See a Different World in 2030 – Bloomberg
While technological advances, migrations, wars and other factors drove change in earlier periods, what sets the next quarter century apart is the way seven “tectonic shifts” are combining to drive change at an accelerating rate, said NIC Counselor Mathew Burrows, the report’s principle author. Those factors are: the growth of the middle class, wider access to new technologies, shifting economic power, aging populations, urbanization, growing demand for food and water, and U.S. energy independence
“It’s hard to wrap your mind around it, to tell you the truth; it’s just been happening at great velocity,” Burrows said in an interview with Bloomberg News discussing the 18-month research project.
That velocity is a function of several mutually reinforcing dynamics, the report found. One is what the report calls a “definitive shift of economic power to the East and South” as the U.S., European and Japanese share of global income is projected to fall from 56 percent today to well under half by 2030.
The report envisions an international economy that remains prone to potential “black swans” such as the collapse of the euro and the European Union, a pandemic, a Chinese economic collapse, a nuclear war or a debilitating cyberattack.
Even absent such events, it says: “A return to pre-2008 growth rates and previous patterns of rapid globalization looks increasingly unlikely, at least for the next decade,” in part because total non-financial debt across G-7 countries has doubled since 1980 to 300 percent of GDP.