Securing the future of our species:
Towards a global governance system able to manage an inclusive and just transition

We are honoured to take over the direction of FOGGS at a time of great opportunities but also great risks. With the acceleration of technological advances, rapid industrialisation and digitalisation, humanity is the major force shaping our planet and determining the future of our species. Breakthroughs in medical science, combined with artificial intelligence and human-machine merging techniques, if put to good use, can guarantee a better, longer and healthier life for all. Alternatively, these advances can further benefit only those few whose ever-accumulating wealth already exceeds that of whole countries and of billions of people. Similarly, increased connectivity, big data and access to information is breaking barriers and opening up mind-boggling opportunities, but the Orwellian growth in surveillance capabilities is challenging the exercise of basic human rights like freedom of expression and privacy.

The foremost goal of FOGGS in the years to come is to ensure that the rapid and transformative technological and digital advances contribute to a more just and equitable world, with a better life for all people. For that we need to foster strong normative frameworks, deliberative institutions and systems that can monitor compliance. Only then will it be possible to ensure the survival of our species, deal with global challenges in an ethical and sustainable way, and guarantee human liberty and well-being for present and future generations, with no individual left behind.

Our starting point remains the FOGGS Grand Narrative of hope, for a people-centred, just and inclusive globalisation. Specific targets towards the achievement of the above goal include:
o Monitoring and reporting on the performance of existing institutions and advancing global governance innovations necessary for dealing with new digital and technological opportunities and challenges;
o Encouraging discussion and decisions on best ways to manage the global cyber commons, outer space, and the use of new “Sapiens+” technologies;
o Promoting the needed overhaul of the educational system with sustainability and peace education standards and initiatives;
o Supporting implementation of Agenda 2030 and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) around the world.

All this requires sustained efforts over the medium- to long-term, which we are determined to make during our 2020-2022 tenure. A major asset is partnerships with other think-and-do-tanks, international and regional organisations, state and local authorities, non-governmental organisations, scientific associations and businesses, which we will continue to pursue, along with the support of individual friends of FOGGS around the world.

Do join us on this journey towards a just and equitable world at a time of drastic digital and technological change.

Brussels, 24 January 2020

Richard KINLEY,  Pyrros PAPADIMITRIOU, Veerle VANDEWEERD, Georgios KOSTAKOS

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