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GLOBAL TRENDS TO 2030: Challenges and Choices for Europe - 2019 ESPAS Report

The next decade will be defining for the future of Europe and Europe’s role in the world. Seismic global power shifts; pressure on liberal democracies; challenges to global governance; the transformation of economic models and the very fabric of societies; new uses and misuses of technology; contrasting demographic patterns; and humanity’s growing ecological footprint – the world is well on its way towards a new geopolitical, geo-economic and geotechnological order. What role will Europe play in this fast-changing world? How can the European Union ensure that it does not end up a middle power, caught between the United States and China? What will it take for Europe to hold its destiny in its own hands in 2030? The future is now, and tomorrow’s challenges (and opportunities) are determined by today’s choices. But the future is not what it used to be. The world is far more complex, contested and competitive than before – and is changing at unprecedented pace. The interconnected and interdependent nature of national, European and global affairs has put a new premium on agile policy- and decision-making, resilience, strategic foresight, and anticipatory governance – all of which are more important now than ever before. Despite being more necessary and urgent, developing a ‘culture of preparedness’ and proactively shaping the future has also become more difficult and testing.

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