A crisis is a terrible thing to waste. How Covid-19 changed our world: Futurist Gerd Leonhard looks back from the near Future

Futuresagency

Recently, I was greatly inspired by a post published by my fellow German Futurist Matthias Horx, describing a post-corona world. In it, he says:

“At the moment I am often asked when Corona „will be over“ and when everything will return to normal. My answer is: never. There are historical moments when the future changes direction. We call them bifurcations. Or deep crises. These times are now. The world as we know it is dissolving. But behind it comes a new world, the formation of which we can at least imagine. For this I would like to offer you an exercise… we call it the RE-gnosis”

I often use a very similar approach that I call ‘coming back from the future’ (aka backcasting) – the idea of using one’s insights and intuition about what is certain to happen, in order to deal with the realities at hand, and be better equipped to create one’s desirable future.

Right after I read Matthias’s post I ran into a powerful video by DemocracyNow, Amy Goodman and Naomi Klein, coining the term ‘Corona Capitalism’ and featuring this well-known Milton Friedman quote:

“Only a crisis – actual or perceived – produces real change. When that crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas that are lying around. That, I believe, is our basic function: to develop alternatives to existing policies, to keep them alive and available until the politically impossible becomes the politically inevitable”

So, in the spirit of ‘finding alternatives’, here are my observations, grouped in 3 chapters and 12 bullets, ‘back-casting’ from late 2020.  Note: not all of the scenarios below are desirable, hence the definition of backcasting (what do we need to do to achieve the future we desire) may sometimes feel a bit odd.

Only a crisis -real or perceived- produces real change. Yes, there is light at the end of this tunnel – the Future is better than we think **

Introduction


United we stand


Business & politics ‘as usual’ is dead


Making way for the new


Use the links above to skip to any of the sections. The external links are culled from my research during the past few days (no links from the future were available, yet:) and are meant to provide some good context to my assertions. This post will be updated frequently.

Gerd Leonhard

Discuss

Cookies & Policy

By using this site you agree to the placement of cookies in accordance with our terms and policy.

EXPLORE DIGITAL CONFERENCING

OVERCOME THE CHALLENGE OF COVID-19

Futurist Gerd Leonhard and TheFuturesAgency now offers 100% online solutions for your event or conference.

CLICK HERE