Game Changer 8: Rise of Authoritarianism

Richard Lum | 10/29/2019

This week the FORESIGHT futurists invite you to take a look at the trends showing a resurgence of authoritarianism—wanting, promising, and being able to obtain power and control—in multiple parts of the world.

When we think about the kind of collaborative work we need to do together to meet the complex challenges for health and well-being that we began to identify in the previous seven Game Changers, it is an important time to consider whether a movement towards more authoritarian governments and societal fragmentation will take a lot of the promising collaborations and possibilities off the table—or at least slow them down.

The FORESIGHT Futures Scan uncovered 72 trends and emerging issues with the potential to impact the future for health and well-being, and synthesized them into nine major Game Changers. In this week’s video, we explore the eighth Game Changer: Rise of Authoritarianism.

Trends are changes over time that we can already measure.

Emerging Issues are potential trends—they haven’t happened yet, but we can detect faint signs that they could be on the horizon.

The resurgence in authoritarianism is enabled by many governments’ increasing tendency to turn to militarization (the process by which a society organizes itself for military conflict and violence). At the same time, populism, tribalism, and nationalism have increased in areas throughout the world and we are seeing decreasing empathy among American college students. These and other things create a social context that makes us less tolerant of other points of view and more accepting of force and violence, and the deterioration of social justice.

This backdrop is already impacting efforts to transform health and well-being, and could potentially do so for the foreseeable future. How will we act, knowing this to be true?

Watch the eighth video in FORESIGHT’s Game Changer Series and share your thoughts and ideas the comments below, or connect using #FutureforHealth and #GameChangers on social media.

Click here for a transcript of the video.

The world is changing fast. It’s time we design a future for health together.
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