War, pandemic & climate change: How will the ongoing crisis change Europe?

Two years with a pandemic. A war with the potential to last social and economic consequences. An ever-raging climate crisis. In a session of Foundation Forum 2022, futurist Liselotte Lyngso joins youth representative Emmy Coffey, and political scientist Ivan Krastev, to talk about how we can rethink the future of Europe.

From post-war to pre-war sentiments 

Right before the war broke out in Ukraine, we’d just started to grasp on to the hope that the world was almost back to normal. We could look forward to a life without lock down and isolation. At that moment, the future of Europe looked very much different than what it looks like today! 

And one thing that’s changed is our feeling of security. The EU union was born in the aftermath of two world wars. It’s built on the idea of democracy, social market economies, the rule of law, and the individual’s right of liberty. But it has paid less attention to issues around collective insecurity. Have we been too self-righteous and naive? 

Remember when people were hoarding toilet paper from the supermarkets when the pandemic had just broken out? Well, the same thing is happening now, just with iodine at the pharmacies and prepping cars. According to Ivan Krastev, this is reflecting how unsafe we feel as citizens of a Europe, where security that used to derive from interdependence and close-knit trade relations, is becoming a source of huge vulnerability. 

A shift into the precision age 

Society changes all the time. We’ve gone from agriculture to industrial society and now, with all the crisis we’re facing, we’re moving from Information Society and into the Precision Age according to futurist Liselotte Lyngso. 

The climate crisis will only continue to cut our resources and make it impossible for us to continue to use and spend commodities without a focus on the value we get in return – and as we have before. Additionally, we will face inflation, rising prices and product shortages because of the Ukraine crisis which will also make us think twice on how much and what we really need. I mean, 1 Euro per egg!? Maybe we should begin to rethink what dishes we really need and how much food waste to accept? 

Luckily, we won’t have to go through these major adjustments just by using our own common sense. With the quick advent of smart technology and IOT, super computers will soon be able to calculate the specific amount we need for a certain cause automatically. This means we’ll have the ability to measure how much food we need to buy so we don’t waste any, how much fertilizer we can use before it ruins our drinking water and so on. 

It’s a game changer to ask ourselves when is enough, enough? Less will be more for both the planet and humanity! Listen to the rest of the session and learn more about the future of Europe in the video below. 

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