Defense

December 12, 2012

National Intelligence Council forecasts megatrends

The American Century is drawing to a close, and the U.S. Defense Department will have to be more flexible in dealing with a faster-paced multipolar world, according to the Global Trends 2030 report released Dec. 10.

The National Intelligence Council has looked to the future to jumpstart the conversation about what U.S. policy should be, given world-wide trends.

In the annual report, the NIC makes its best guesses about several “megatrends” that will shape the world in 2030.

The first is individual empowerment. The council believes there will be a significant decrease in poverty in the world and a concomitant increase in the middle class. The council says this represents a “tectonic shift,” as for the first time in history “a majority of the world’s population will not be impoverished.”

The NIC expects the global economy to expand and the new members of the middle class will be able to harness new communications and manufacturing technologies.

The council sees this megatrend as the key to solving global challenges over the next 15 to 20 years. But the results of this expanded economy aren’t all rosy. The trend could also give individuals and small groups access to lethal and disruptive technologies and capabilities once only held by nation states.

The second megatrend NIC predicts is the diffusion of power. The council posits that by 2030, Asia will surpass the West in gross domestic production, population size, military spending and technology investment. If this occurs, China would become the world’s largest economy, with India and Brazil close behind. Other rising nations could include Colombia, Indonesia, Nigeria, South Africa and Turkey, while Russia, Europe and Japan could continue their declines.

But, according to the council, more important than who is up or down is that the nature of power will change. “Enabled by communications technologies, power will shift toward multifaceted and amorphous networks that will form to influence state and global actions,” the report says. Countries unable to understand or use these new technologies “will not be able to punch their weight.”

Demographic changes will transform the world of 2030, the report said. NIC estimates that the world population will grow from 7.1 billion today to 8.3 billion in 2030. Aging, migration and urbanization will push this megatrend. Its most noticeable manifestation will be the continued growth of cities, the report predicts, spurring economic growth, but potentially straining food and water resources.

The report said developing countries could become demographically “older,” while the demand for labor drives migration. “Owing to rapid urbanization in the developing world, the volume of urban construction … over the next 40 years could roughly equal the entire volume of such construction to date in world history,” the report says.

Finally, NIC predicts that “demand for food, water and energy will grow by approximately 35, 40 and 50 percent respectively.” The growing population and expanded middle class will trigger that growth, the report said.

At the same time, the council wrote, climate change will accelerate, amplifying existing weather patterns – meaning that wet areas become wetter and dry areas become drier. The council said this does not necessarily mean a world of scarcity, but stressed that world leaders must collaborate to tackle the problem.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines December 22, 2014

News: Report: DOD bomb hunters pried into U.S. firms, citizens - During some of the bloodiest days of U.S. combat in Afghanistan and the roadside bomb threat there, the Pentagon’s Joint IED Defeat Organization “improperly collected” intelligence on U.S. citizens and corporations to try to stem the threat, a Pentagon Inspector General report has found.  ...
 
 

News Briefs December 22, 2014

U.K., Canadian military leaves to join Ebola fight Reservists and troops from Britain and Canada have left for Sierra Leone to help in the battle to contain the Ebola virus outbreak. British officials said Dec. 20 that 16 reservists and 100 regular military personnel left on a morning flight from the Brize Norton military airbase....
 
 
Boeing photograph

Boeing, Malaysia Airlines celebrate 100th 737 delivery

Boeing photograph Boeing and Malaysia Airlines celebrated the direct delivery of the airline’s 100th 737 aircraft at an event in Seattle. Shown here Aminuddin Zakaria, senior vice president, airline engineering group, Malaysi...
 

 

Navy helicopter crashes in Kuwait; all crewmembers ok

A U.S. Navy MH-60S helicopter assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 26 (HSC 26) crashed at 11:22 a.m., EST, Dec.21, while on an overland training flight at Camp Buehring, Kuwait. All six personnel aboard the helicopter survived the crash and were transported to nearby medical facilities for evaluation. Three of the six crewmembers sustained minor...
 
 

AMC relocates KC-135 simulator

As Air Mobility Command fields the KC-46A Pegasus, displaced KC-135 Stratotanker pilot simulators will be relocated across the Total Force to maximize simulator access across the mobility enterprise. As a result, AMC, in coordination with the Air National Guard, recently identified four KC-135 pilot flight simulators and one KC-135 Boom Operator Weapons System Trainer to...
 
 

SpaceX completes first milestone for Commercial Crew Transportation System

NASA has approved the completion of SpaceX’s first milestone in the company’s path toward launching crews to the International Space Station from U.S. soil under a Commercial Crew Transportation Capability contract with the agency. During the Certification Baseline Review, SpaceX described its current design baseline including how the company plans to manufacture its Crew Dragon spacecraft...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>