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Saudi Arabia and the Chinese Belt and Road: the Great Convergence

In February 2019, during the Saudi Arabia-China economic forum, the two countries signed for more than 28 billion dollars deals (“Saudi-Chinese Investment Forum Signs 35 Deals During Crown Prince’s Beijing Visit”, Ashark Al Awsat, 22 February, 2019). These gigantic deals are part of the growing Saudi-China relationship. They are the economic and political continuation of …

Revisiting Timeliness for Strategic Foresight and Warning and Risk Management

[Fully rewritten version v3] To exist, risk and foresight products as well as warnings must be delivered to those who must act upon them, the customers, clients or users. These anticipation analyses must also be actionable, which means that they need to include the right information necessary to see action taken. Yet, if you deliver …

The Future of Iran’s Regional Role – A Historical Backgrounder

For this strategic foresight and warning series focused on the future of Iran notably as a regional player, within the next three to five years, we shall start analysing Iran’s history and political institutions and then we shall investigate Iran’s relations with leading regional and global powers.

Space Mining, Artificial Intelligence and Transition?

Is space mining the short and long-term future for energy and industry? Nowadays, this question is rooted in the rapid development of the industrial, financial, technological and legal apparatus around the idea of mining asteroids. For example, on 6 January 2015, the US President, then Barack Obama, signed the US commercial space launch competitiveness act. …

A Deeper Look at Cryptocurrencies – Bitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple

This article explains further what a cryptocurrency is, with the examples of Bitcoin, Ethereum and Ripple, focusing on the most common underlying technology, the blockchain and its implementation. It underlines commonalities and differences between the three cryptocurrencies, starting highlighting their potential advantages and dangers compared with classical international currencies. It notably singles out one of the main challenges characterizing the Bitcoin phenomenon: energy sustainability.

Signals: Jerusalem – The U.S. Defeated at the U.N., China Seeks Advantage?

Impacts and Consequences Increased likelihood to see a global perception of the global U.S. influence and power lowered; Increased likelihood to see a global perception of the regional (Middle East) U.S. influence and power lowered. Should China step in successfully as peace broker between Israelis and Palestinians Increased likelihood to see global perception of a …

Artificial Intelligence on the Chinese New Silk Road

In this article, we shall study how the deployment of the B&R integrates the deployment of the sinosphere through the increasing use of AI as a tool to reinforce the efficiency of the international transport, information and communication infrastructures that actually shape the New Silk Road/B&R.

Signals: A Russian-backed Congress in Sochi for Future Peace in Syria?

Impacts and Consequences If Russia succeeds in gathering major actors in a congress in Sochi, which we estimate as likely (55% to 70%) Increased likelihood to see, at the end of the process, a constructive peace settling in Syria Increased likelihood to see the birth of a Federal Syria Increased likelihood to see the survival of the Kurdish-led Federation of Northern Syria Increased likelihood to see a serious lowering of tensions in the Middle East and even some kind of stabilisation Increased Russian influence (Nota: The symbolic board has been moved to the end of the analysis and before the sources/signals) Facts and analysis As stated by Russian President Putin, the overarching goal is now, for Syria, “the political settlement process, …

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Signal: Russia’s Putin Hosts Syria’s Assad for Working Meeting on Future Syria at Peace

Impact on Issues and Uncertainties ? Degree of influence of Russia on Turkey compared with Turkey’s perception of threat related to a Kurdish polity on its southern flank (near future critical uncertainty)? Finding a compromise on Hezbollah and Iran presence or withdrawal from a future peaceful Syria (near future critical uncertainty) ? Are the root causes that allowed the Islamic State to rise in the region addressed (medium to longer term critical uncertainty)? ➚ ➄ to ➂ Constructive peace for Syria➚ Creation of a Federal Syria➚ ➃ to ➂ Survival of the Kurdish-led Federation of Northern Syria➘ ➃ to ➂ Middle East Tension ➚ ➃ Turkey’s perception of threat➙ Threat to Israel ➚➚ ➃ Russia influence➙ ➃ U.S. influence trial – likely leading to ➙➘ U.S. influence➚ ? ➁ U.S. Russia global tensions ?  Global spread “under cover” of Jihadism➚ ?  Strengthening of al-Qaeda➙ ? Resilience of Islamic …

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Challenges Looming over the Petrodollar System

This article focuses mainly on the petrodollar system, which is at the heart of the U.S. dollar supremacy, and on the challenges it meets. Meanwhile, these trials start outlining potential futures for the international currency system.

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