The Red (team) Analysis Weekly No123, 24 October 2013

Japan, an exemplary case for a complex world? The situation of Japan can be seen as a perfect case that exemplifies the complex dynamics into which we are taken. Absence of foresight and warning as well as refusal to consider the reality of environmental risk – and to act accordingly – plays a large part in the Fukushima continuing tragedy, which, added to the lasting Syrian war and related international quagmire, means a rising energy bill. Meanwhile, delocalization stops the country to see its exports increasing sufficiently. As a result, Japan knows its longest series of trade deficit since 1979, which may only degrade further its already dire financial situation, considering its public deficit. We thus have the interplay of many factors, some of them apparently far away or deemed impossible or unimportant, all converging. Could this type of configuration spread, making the situation of McDonald’s workers the most probable future for the worldwide middle class? And, if the middle class continues shrinking (check the videos), what will happen to liberal democracies, while the Westphalian state is questioned from without and within? One way forward could come from the University of Oklahoma’s researchers, as they developed a new video game aiming at mitigating biases. If awareness of and struggle against biases was to be generalized, and, among others, applied to the need to reinvest in policy-making – to say nothing of the need to have a real strategy – then the odds to see our future improving, at individual, country and world level, would be considerably strengthened. Shall we decide to use this opportunity?

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Red team Analysis, horizon scanning, weak signal, political risk, strategic warning, anticipatory intelligence

Published by Dr Helene Lavoix (MSc PhD Lond)

Dr Helene Lavoix, PhD Lond (International Relations), is the President/CEO of The Red Team Analysis Society. She is specialised in strategic foresight and warning for international relations, national and international security issues. Her current focus is on the war in Ukraine, international order and the rise of China, the overstepping of planetary boundaries and international relations, the methodology of SF&W, radicalisation as well as new tech and security.

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