COVID-19 – The World After
How will the world after Coronavirus look like? Different, but still the same.
March 20, 2020, Max Stucki
The COVID-19 has shaken the lives of everyone, but the crisis will be overcome. However, economic, political and social changes are unavoidable. For this reason, it is important to anticipate the world after Coronavirus to ease the recovery.
ECONOMIC AND GEOPOLITICAL CONSEQUENCES
Economically speaking, Corona will have expedited and deepened the expected economic downturn in many countries.
Politically, the outbreak showed that countries first and foremost are looking after their own security and well-being, hence decreasing trust in the various multinational organisations and pacts.
Socially, however, the COVID-19 will have showed us that as societies, we still can absorb shocks. This is an important lesson that needs to be relearned by every generation.
The world after is a place where China will most likely have proved that it can shoulder the weight of global leadership, at least by giving an example. The trust in the ability of the USA to act, on the other hand, will have been further eroded.
The global pandemic may have shown to way to curb climate change; people can live without unnecessary travelling, even the holiday kind.
At the same time, in the world after Coronavirus, nations should have learned that they cannot worry only about one thing at the time. Several complex issues need to be dealt with simultaneously and a rapidly emerging crisis should not change the larger picture of priorities, like climate change.
RECOVERY – REPATRIATE AND LOCALISE
Also, as the normal times have returned, there will be increased discussions about repatriating vital supply chains, e.g., of the medical industry. Local production and all related technologies will have gained speed. The post-Corona world will have learned a lot more about the value of factual reporting.
However, at the same time, governments are more aware of the need to manage the public’s perceptions. Harder measures to curb fake news and foreign information operations will become a standard procedure both during normal and crisis times.
In time, a new normal will have been reached. Even though a strong memory of the crisis will persist, the world will have changed less than one might think. There will be more pressure on governments to prepare for future emergencies and demands for better leadership.
Even though there will be economic hardship, the business conditions will eventually become better. This is not thanks to increased goodwill, altruism or rebuild international relations. Rather, as always in history, the very human desire for gain will force the path of history back to its old tracks.
THE NEED TO KEEP ANTICIPATING THE UNLIKELY
The COVID-19 outbreak will also have, once again, proved the need for preparing for various scenarios. Plans anticipating pandemics, or other changes, are not drawn up in vain, even though at the moment of their making that may be the prevailing feeling. The world is a dynamic place; it necessitates foresight and future preparedness.
What are your next steps in preparing the world after COVID-19?
THE COLLIDING PHENOMENA
To write this article, Futures Platform's futurists have collected the data from different phenomena and found the linkages among them. Here are the three colliding phenomena that are causing this trend:
World Health Organization declared coronavirus COVID-19 a pandemic on 11 March 2020. The virus outbreak likely started at a wildlife market in Wuhan, China. Coronavirus spreads rapidly and can cause respiratory infections and pneumonia. The death rate among infected elderly is high. Individuals who contract the virus can transmit it before they have any signs of illness, which makes controlling the outbreak challenging. According to epidemiologist Marc Lipsitch, 60% of the adult population could become infected.
Need for a culture of preparedness
Culture of preparedness refers to a conscious and planned effort by the government to help various local communities to build up their resilience in the face of disasters. The community resilience is based on the utilization of local resources which enable the residents to be prepared to withstand shocks also in situations in which government help is not immediately available. Culture of preparedness includes both the local capacities and networks, as well as a sense of urgency about maintaining them.
You can find more detailed descriptions about these phenomena and their impacts on Futures Platform.