“There are decades when nothing happens and weeks when decades happen.” – Vladimir Lenin
That quote is highlighted in a new book by best-selling author Fareed Zakaria. In “Ten Lessons for a Post- Pandemic World”, Mr. Zakaria helps readers to understand the nature of a world that emerges after the pandemic: the political, social, technological, and economic consequences that may take years to unfold. He does this by focusing on ten lessons:
- Buckle up
- What Matters Is Not the Quantity of Government but the Quality
- Markets Are Not Enough
- People Should Listen to the Experts—and Experts Should Listen to the People
- Life is digital
- Aristotle Was Right—We Are Social Animals
- Inequality will get worse
- Globalization is not dead
- The world is becoming bipolar
- Sometimes the Greatest Realists Are the Idealists
The book offers a great look at history and the Catalysts that forced human action in the past. Whether COVID-19 proves to be a catalyst remains to be seen, as some believe it will be a hinge event that alters human history, and others believe it will accelerate, versus reshape it. Past events like the bubonic plague were in the former category, altering human history in a considerable way. As the author describes, it prompted an intellectual revolution. Many fourteenth-century Europeans asked why God would allow this hell on earth and questioned entrenched hierarchies – which had the ultimate effect of helping Europe break out of its medieval malaise and setting in motion the Renaissance, Reformation, and Enlightenment.
The book delves into the origins of COVID-19 and the reasons that we can expect more of these viruses. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that three-quarters of new human diseases originate in animals – and in many parts of the world, we are living closer to wild animals. The more we extend civilization into nature, the odds that animals will pass disease to us increase. Fighting disease takes global cooperation – something that is lacking in the current virus response. Compare and contrast the current virus with another historical comparison: the eradication of smallpox is a story that is only partly about science and mostly about extraordinary cooperation between rival superpowers and impressive execution across the globe. This was a story of cooperation between two rival powers (Russia, U.S.) dating back to 1958. By 1980, smallpox was eradicated. Global cooperation is an important theme throughout the book, as you cannot defeat global diseases (or deal with climate change, govern the path of AI, etc.) without some level of global governance.
Governance in the context of innovation does not mean slowing it down or blocking its path. Innovation will continue at incredible speed, and there is nothing we can/should do about that. Extreme events are likely to grow more frequent, and that phenomenon is mostly out of our hands as well. But the author hits the nail on the head when he says: “What we can do is be far more conscious of the risks we face, prepare for the dangers, and equip our societies to be resilient.” Education, awareness, and a willingness to think differently will go a long way towards realizing all three. I really enjoyed this book and have added it to my Library.
Explore other pandemic topics via the links below.
FEATURED: A Post Pandemic Society
- COVID-19 Accelerates Innovation In Healthcare
- Eight Trends Amplified By COVID-19
- Bill Gates Looks At Life After COVID-19
- Covid-19 Leaves Its Mark on Real Estate
- The Pandemic Is Impacting Multiple Domains
- A Glimpse Into Your Views On Catalysts For Change
- The Future Of The Office And Changing Work For The Better
- Tectonic Shifts Expected As Digital Expands
- COVID-19 Is Not Slowing Artificial Intelligence Down
- What History Tells Us About Deglobalization
- The Augmented Age: An Accelerated Path
- The Personalized Health Ecosystem
- Aftershocks and Opportunities: Scenarios For A Post-Pandemic Future
- The Emergence Of New Commerce Centers And More
- Some Job Opportunities Likely To Expand
- The Far Reaching Implications Of A Shifting Work Dynamic
- Reflect, Reimagine, and Reset
- Human Behavior Determines The Path
- The Technologies And trends Accelerated By COVID-19
- Blasting Into A Contactless Future
- Digital Learning And Resilient Supply Chains
- Will Coronavirus Accelerate the Path To A Surveillance State?
- Does COVID-19 Accelerate The Loss of Jobs To Automation?
- Lack Of Comfort In Close Spaces
- A Post-Pandemic Virtual Roundtable
- Learning From Leaders Around The World
- A Digital Divide
- What Behavior Changes Will Stick?
- 30 Top Experts Describe The Things That Will Change Forever
- Global Economic Recovery
- Does COVID-19 Change Your View of Innovation?
- COVID-19 As An Accelerant
- COVID-19 Tuesday Morning News
- How Long Until The Economic New Normal?
- We Must Think Critically and Differently
- How Might The World Respond?
- Rehearsing Possible Post COVID-19 Futures
- Possible Futures Emerging Across Multiple Domains
- More Thought Leaders Weigh In On A Post Pandemic Future
- Mid-Pandemic Impact on Supply Chains
- Post COVID-19 Economic Recovery Scenarios
- Is The Canary Dead?
- How Will The Corona Virus Impact Globalization?
- The Corona Virus Serves As A Catalyst For Change
- Post COVID-19 Economic Recovery Scenarios
- COVID-19 Monday Morning News
- Anatomy Of An Outbreak
- Discussing A Post-Pandemic Society on Salem Radio Network
- The COVID-19 Economic Impact On China and a Glimpse Of The Future
- Assessing A Post Pandemic Future: A Video
- Coronavirus: Permanent Change? 34 Big Thinkers Explore the Possibilities
- Futurist Gerd Leonhard Looks Back From The Near Future