What are the three most relevant challenges for Global Politics in 2014?

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  1. Dibyesh Anand 4 years ago
    1. The growing sense of despair at the ability of the nation-states to deliver public goods for the majority of people. Policy making in most nation-states, including in the so-called established democracies, is tightly controlled by a tiny elite. What the public faces are reductionist notions and roles of the state that is primarily there to police and suppress them.
    2. How the hitherto dominant actors, especially in the West, engage with emerging non-Western powers and whether the competition leads to a more unstable world or not. The footprint of China on the world in general and its neighbourhood in particular would be conspicuous.
    3. The crisis of morality where no ideal – democracy, human rights, multilateralism, sovereignty – will evoke consensus and in this both the Western and non Western powers will be equally guilty of the the race to the bottom. For instance, Europeans so far have shown an utter lack of imagination on how to retain a sense of commitment to democracy and human rights while bending over backwards to placate Beijing in order to get a bigger share of the pie of the Chinese economy.
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  2. Alexei Voskressenski 4 years ago
    1. The situation in Afghanistan after the American troops are out and the possibility of beningn multilateral arrangements to stabilize this Central Asian hot spot between the USA, China, Russia, EU and probably Pakistan and India.
    2. The possibility for stable economic growth of the world economy in 2014.
    3. China’s economic development in 2014 and its correlation with China’s foreign policy.
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  3. Andrey Makarychev 4 years ago
    1. The ongoing collision between the EU and Russia over the Eastern Partnership countries and ultimately, in fact, over a new geopolitical shape of Eastern Europe and the South Caucasus.
    2. New security challenges after the withdrawal of the NATO troops from Afghanistan that will inevitably affect a group of most important countries like China, India, Pakistan, and Russia.
    3. Possible conflicts over the access to energy resources, especially in the Arctic.
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  4. Theodoros Tsakiris 4 years ago

    The restabilization of the political situation in the Near East is the top priority for Global Affairs in 2014 followed by the necessity to proceed with the Banking Union in the Eurozone Area. Since a EuroBond is still a distant prospect completing the Banking Union is the best possible way to guarantee the inviolability of the Eurozone unity. Stability in the Near East necessitates the political resolution of the Syrian Civil War through some sort of power sharing agreement as the Assad regime sheds its chemical weapons arsenal. The international community should also be ready to protect Lebanon’s sovereignty from a complete Syrian meltdown.

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  5. Caroline King 4 years ago
    • The transatlantic year: 2014 may be a year where what doesn't happen will be more important than what does happen. Not signing TTIP will confirm to Asia the perception that the West is in decline, whether the numbers confirm it or not.  Also a pivotal year for transatlantic security cooperation.
    • US energy independence and  increased destabilization of the Middle East: "Frack" was an expletive in the Battlestar Galactica TV series and that's probably how oil sheiks in the Middle East see it too. American energy independence threatens to exacerbate  the impact of isolationism.
    • Data privacy versus free data flow: Will we see the EU data protection reform implemented? Will we see UN guidelines on online privacy following the German-Brazilian resolution? We'll need to find a solution for these impasses as the open data society, the open government movement, and the open knowledge economy continue to grow exponentially.
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  6. Panayotis Tsakonas 4 years ago
    • The implications of globalization for the economic development of
      the “have-nots” of our world
    • the management of climate change and environmental degradation by
      both international organizations and states, and
    • the difficulty, if not inability, of most states experiencing an
      eroded sovereignty, to effectively deal with threats and risks that transcend socio-economic, demographic and geographic boundaries.
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  7. Dorothea Schäfer 4 years ago
    • Overcoming the Eurozone debt crisis and avoiding a downturn in the emerging economies. Investors may leave emerging economies recovery and trust returns to the Eurozone. This is a big threat for these economies.
    • Balancing the trade-off between making the debt level of private households, banks and governments bearable and feeding bubbles in housing and other durable goods markets Low interest rates are needed to keep debt levels at a bearable level but at the same time the loose monetary policy creates the risk of bubbles.
    • Overcoming the huge trade imbalance in the world.
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  8. David Rousseau 4 years ago

    The three most important challenges in 2014 are failed states, poverty, and consolidating democracy. Failed states (http://ffp.statesindex.org/rankings-2013-sortable) remain one of the leading causes of human suffering by increasing violence, disease, starvation, and migration. The instability of these states spills into neighboring countries and invites international intervention (e.g., Democratic Republic of the Congo). Although the Millennium Development Goals have focused attention and resources on reducing poverty, progress remains uneven with 1.2 billion still living in extreme poverty – including nearly 48% in Sub-Saharan Africa (http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/mdgoverview/mdg_goals/mdg1/). Finally, many of the world's recent cases of democratization remain unconsolidated and in danger of slipping back into authoritarianism.

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  9. Dmitri Mitin 4 years ago

    A key concern for the upcoming year is a runaway destabilization of Afghanistan following the drawdown of the U.S. and allied forces there. For the principal stakeholders, figuring out how to implement disengagement without triggering state failure is likely to continue by means of trial-and-error. Another lingering challenge in 2014 is working out a meaningful international response to the crisis in Syria that, realistically, will probably be restricted to minimizing the cross-border spill-over effects. Finally, sustaining a still fragile global economic growth will remain a major imperative for domestic and international decision-makers.

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  10. Noah Toly 4 years ago

    Climate change, widening disparities in wealth, and urbanization are the three most important challenges for 2014. We must increase our investments in mitigation and adaptation in order to promote a climate-stable future and decrease risks to the most vulnerable communities. We should also attend to widening disparities in wealth that contribute to social tensions. Finally, cities – especially global cities and megacities – are becoming the crucibles in which the pressures of these global challenges are felt and through which solutions must be found.

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  11. Nguon Serath 4 years ago

    The most relevant challenges will be the South China Sea, the dispute between Japan and China, and the long lasting dispute in Korean Peninsula. As ASEAN is moving toward the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community in 2015, solidarity is still in question as some ASEAN member sates such as Cambodia are strong supporters of China. The South China Sea will continuously challenge regional and international security. The disputes between Japan and China over a series of islands is another concern in global politics, due to the serious consequence it may have. The last but not least challenge is to bring peace to the Korean Peninsula. The war between North Korea and South Korea could happen anytime.

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  12. Dimitrios Triantaphyllou 4 years ago
    • The sabre rattling in the South China Sea is a major cause for concern as China seeks to test the limits of relative power vis-à-vis Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan as well as the interests of the hegemon, the United States.
    • The ongoing tumult in the Middle East expressed, inter alia, in the form of the violent civil war in Syria or the constitutional crisis in Egypt.
    • The need for a revamped strategy and foreign policy by the European Union as its Eastern and Southern neighborhoods are in ebullition while on the other hand the EU has had successes at keeping multilateralism on the international agenda via its mediation of the E3+3 talks with regard to the interim nuclear deal with Iran and the talks between Serbia and Kosovo. To reword this: Keeping the EU focused on having a coherent foreign, security and defense policy.
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  13. Stefan Engert 4 years ago

    The most relevant challenge for the “West” is a normative one: to tame a security-obsessed Leviathan. Like in Goethe’s poem “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice”, we need to reestablish the balance between security and the rule of law/individual freedom: Cyber-espionage (the NSA scandal), the highly dubious data preservation and so called “harsher interrogation techniques” (torture) have called into question the ability and willingness to stick to the concept of an open society that respects citizens- and human rights. Meanwhile, we forget that in the Southern hemisphere people die because of hunger, civil wars, refugee flows and state failure.

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  14. Klaus Segbers 4 years ago

    1 Increasing sectarian violence based on or leading to failing states. Extremely difficult to address.
    2 An EU not overcoming its internal challenges. Core projects have to be defined, and exit options should be offered to the laggards.
    3 The East and South China Sea areas look troubling. This could be a trigger for a bigger “unintentional” conflict.

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  15. Manfred Steger 4 years ago

    I see as the biggest challenge for global politics in 2014 to follow U.N. General Secretary Ban Ki-moon’s visionary call and embark on new directions on energy and climate, thus setting the world on a lasting low-carbon path at the upcoming Climate Change Summit in New York. The second challenge is to finally secure the nuclear plant site in Fukushima and prevent the further leaking of radioactive substances into the soil and the Pacific. The third challenge is to arrive at a lasting peace agreement in Syria and further normalize the West’s relationship with Iran.

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  16. Marco Overhaus 4 years ago

    1. Finding a long-term solution to the dispute over Iran’s nuclear program as an indispensable starting-point to build a new Middle East security architecture.
    2. Defining an effective way to follow-up on the Millennium Development Goals post-2015.
    3. Managing the security transition in Afghanistan and maintaining political support – inside and outside the country – for security, political and developmental engagement of the international community after 2014.

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  17. Shen Dingli 4 years ago

    1. The US military withdrawal from Afghanistan form 2014, for most of its armed forces stationed there, will bear much uncertain prospect for stability/ instability in the country and region.
    2. China’s handling of its relations with America and its neighbors will draw greater international attention, setting stage of both great power gaming and regional security and economic order.
    3. Global governance will continue to face setback in 2014 when dealing with cyber security, energy/environment and climate change, without much headway of improvement but increasing risk of international tension.

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2 Comments

  1. Robert Sloan 4 years ago

    It´s interesting to see what is regarded as main challenges here. Looking at the numbers, the top priority for every concerned human being should be hunger, though. As Jean Ziegler put it a while ago: “Every five seconds one child under the age of 5 dies from hunger or malnutrition-related disease. Every four minutes, one person loses his or her eyesight for lack of vitamin A. More than 852 million people do not get enough food each day to sustain a normal life. This is a shame on humanity. It is time to enforce the right to food.”

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  2. Cathy Moore 4 years ago

    Navigating the race to the Arctic and its resources will be a matter of wielding soft power for the nations who believe they hold a stake. Greenland may push for independence, using the opportunity to cast fresh light on indigenous peoples’ issues, but environmental issues will remain at the fore as green policy champion Denmark struggles to cut the apron strings.

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