The OCSE – Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe – has recently published a report that attempts to forecast the planet’s next fifty years from a development and growth perspective. Due to the importance of both the topic and the organisation behind the report, the results have quickly spread around the world, with many mainstream media picking up on the bleak prophecies too.
How could it be possible? Is the best of capitalism really over for rich countries, just like the ever-progressive ‘Guardian’ newspaper said? Sometimes numbers seem indisputable, however, predictions are made to be refuted by facts and reality is always bound to surprise us more than any report. Judging from the data provided by OCSE, it seems quite unlikely that the race for progress of developing countries will go on for ever: growth on a worldwide level will in fact decrease of the 3.6% in the 2010-2020 decade, and then of the 2.4% between 2050-2060.
Only in 2060, always according to OCSE, China’s per capita income will be as much as what each US citizen is earning today. This is what has emerged in relation to developing countries, but what about more established economies? Innovation and specialisation – together with an increased dynamism in the employment sector, as suggested by the report – are what will keep us afloat. Our growth will depend on research, therefore all the politics concerning education will be of crucial importance as they are bound to feed a labour market in need of highly specialised individuals. It’s not that bad then, we just need to be prepared for this appointment with the future. And let’s take these predictions with a pinch of salt, what will happen tomorrow is not written in stone: we are the ones writing it, day after day.