The decade from 2030 will see a remarkable and dangerous confluence of world events and trends – a spike on the graph paper of life that will influence humanity for good or ill as never before. Combating the worst effects of this will require urgent action, informed by the clearest possible understanding of where we are now and where we might go.

Such action could lead us to a saner, healthier and safer society – the not too distant future could be one of unparalleled peace, prosperity and general well-being. The knowledge and resources for this are in place, or can be seen not too far away. We have the best educated generation ever; wealth and potential wealth, though badly distributed, are at their highest and increasing, ...

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