Home Overview 2020: The “phoney year”

GEAB 141

The monthly bulletin of LEAP (European Laboratory of Political Anticipation) - 15 Jan 2020

Overview 2020: The “phoney year”

As an introduction to our traditional January “key trends”, here are the main guiding lines that we have identified for this “phoney year [1]”.

This first year of the new decade promises us a journey through dangerous waters. And the financial crisis announced two years ago by a desperate world of finance could be the least of our worries. That said, 2020 will be characterised by a radicalisation of both the worst and the best, where the increasingly obvious successes of the “world-after” will push the last supporters of the “world-before” to make increasingly dramatic mistakes. US-China relations will continue to be strained throughout the year, in the context of a US presidential campaign in which anti-Chinese sentiment provides a unifying bipartisan theme. Europe will be forced to consolidate the third way, which it de facto embodies, if it wants to avoid becoming the battleground of this US-China war.

Geopolitics: An 80% risk of serious conflagration

We had planned a January GEAB issue focused on geopolitical risks in 2020. Current events have preceded us, and the US-Iranian crisis has ushered in the New Year in style. But it’s not only the Middle East that is a cause for concern. In fact, we continue to believe that this region is under such tight control that it is more conducive to inventing the alliances and governance that the 21st century needs than it is to a widespread and prolonged conflagration. Rather, sparks could fly in a number of other parts of the world. A non-exhaustive list of such events will be presented in the rest of this bulletin.

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Contents

A non-exhaustive review of global risk by continents/regions Geopolitical tensions will dominate the year 2020. From the most structural to the most cyclical, the reasons are: The multipolar world is [...]

Briefly annotated, here are some important dates to keep in mind as we look ahead to 2020. 31st January: EU – Official exit of the UK The beginning of some [...]

As we do every year, GEAB by LEAP is presenting a landscape of the key trends for the coming year. Besides the intellectual value of this LEAP contribution, which, of [...]

Bitcoin: Digital Gold The fairly sharp rise in the price of Bitcoin at the time of the Iranian-American crisis confirms the intuition we had in June: Bitcoin is acting as [...]

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