Experts

An image of a future Sri Lanka

Clean technology disruptions can springboard Sri Lanka from economic collapse to unthinkable prosperity

Sri Lanka is deeply embroiled in a crisis. Fuel shortages have led to protests. Food protests have led to riots. The President fled the country and then resigned by email. A new President was just elected on Wednesday, July 20, but he is no outsider – he has been Prime Minister six times already. The …

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a woman wearing a silk kimono robe

Dropping Silk Stockings Created an Oral Health Revolution (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 7)

For most of human history, it was not routine for people to brush their teeth. But by the 1960s, majorities of most Western countries had a daily oral hygiene routine. Because oral hygiene is so central to wider health, the mainstreaming of dental care had a huge impact on the global disease burden, reducing the …

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Largest EU economy can reach 100% ‘clean energy’ by 2035 for less than fossil fuel spending

Germany can shift its entire electricity system onto solar, wind and batteries by 2030 for less than 1% of its GDP. And the country’s entire energy system can go 100% clean energy by 2035 for less than what it spends on fossil fuels. In 10-15 years, Germany can change everything, permanently ending the era of …

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feast

The Shipping Container Disruption Helped End Famines (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 6)

Images from Unsplash by Spencer Davis and Avel Chuklanov   The basics of life – energy, minerals, water, food – are not evenly distributed around the world, so peace and prosperity depend strongly on the ability to move goods and people quickly and cheaply. That’s how a seemingly obscure technology revolution starting in the mid-1950s …

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Russia’s invasion of Ukraine could spark global food riots – the solution is precision fermentation

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is about to set in motion a chain of feedback effects leading to a sudden, rapid escalation of global political instability. Various UN agencies, and now the IMF, have warned of social unrest at a similar scale to the ‘Arab Spring’ events in 2011. What few understand is the role of key technology …

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The Coming Global Fertilizer Crisis – and How to Solve it (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 5)

A global food crisis is looming, with high natural gas prices driving up the cost of ammonia fertilizer and the war in Ukraine threatening this year’s crops from both there and Russia. The consequences of mishandling this crisis could be dire. Research by complexity theorist Yaneer Bar-Yam suggests that high food prices are directly connected …

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How Energy Disruption Led to Russia-Ukraine Crisis – and How the Crisis Will Accelerate Disruption

Conventional analysts are looking at the Russian invasion of Ukraine through the lens of military strategy and geopolitical rivalry. But the invasion and its geopolitical consequences can only be properly understood in the context of wider transformations in the global economy, driven by disruptions unfolding across every major sector, namely, energy, transportation, food, information and …

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The Disruption of Slavery Unveils Fastest Path to End Today’s Wars (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 4)

We are now at a crossroads in history, and no path forward looks pleasant. The war in Ukraine is killing innocent civilians, disrupting lives, and shaking the markets in energy, food and other commodities, making us wonder how we let ourselves become so complacent in trading with Russia, whose government has shown such little respect …

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The UN climate panel still doesn’t understand technology – and it matters

With the Sixth Assessment Report of the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) being released, it’s important to revisit the climate scenarios that are its centerpiece. These scenarios form the basis of the climate science community’s modeling and projections, which in turn affects governance and investment decisions across the world. Trillions of dollars …

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