The world we know is eminently fragile. “The End of the World is Just the Beginning: Mapping the Collapse of Globalisation” is a book about how this fragility will lead to collapse. The book reminds me of “Leading through Disruption: A Changemaker’s Guide to Twenty-First Century Leadership”, but then on steroids. It is all about geopolitics, supply line disruption, defragmentation of globalisation and the consequences of such. The ultimate consequences are war and famine. It is a very bleak book. Everything local is the solution. I suggest you read “Designing Reality: How to Survive and Thrive in the Third Digital Revolution” as an antidote.
Our world is breaking apart
Geopolitically and demographically speaking, we have been living in that perfect moment for most of the last seventy-five years. Since 1945, the world has been the best it has ever been. The best it will ever be. Now, our world is doomed.
The book starts by explaining that geography matters. Place matters. Demographics, land, water, energy, wind, minerals and logistics. Place has mattered less since 1945 because the USA took on the role of being the global police agent. Securing the supply lines and securing globalisation. Establishing the Global Order.
Globalisation was always dependent upon the Americans’ commitment to the global Order, and that Order hasn’t served Americans’ strategic interests since the Berlin Wall fell in 1989. Without the Americans riding herd on everyone, it is only a matter of time before something in East Asia or the Middle East or the Russian periphery (like, I don’t know, say, a war) breaks the global system beyond repair. Assuming that the Americans don’t do it themselves.
The author predicts the collapse of China, Japan, Korea, Canada and most of Europe because of demographics alone. Mass retirement and a population crash. He calls it terminal demographics. Remove mass consumption due to demographic collapses, and the entire economic argument for mass integration collapses.
The second collapse is trade. In a safe, globalised world, such a hybridisation model can limp along so long…