Scientific and technological advances in recent decades have greatly improved our capacity to predict and protect ourselves from many natural and man-made disasters. Yet, we remain extremely vulnerable both to natural elements and to the unpredictability of scientific advancements created through humanity’s hubris. A shift in the dominance of nuclear-powered states has led to a small handful of countries exercising their ‘sovereign right’ to pursue the ultimate prize of a nuclear weapon. Meanwhile, states with nuclear weapons exercise the right to obliterate the world at the push of a button. Finally, global technology giants are working with the global military-industrial complex to further weaponise and harness data, artificial intelligence and technology for defence and ultimately war.
Since 1947, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists (BAS) annually adjusts its symbolic Doomsday Clock, which indicates how close humanity and the planet are to complete destruction. It is now 100 seconds to midnight: what can we achieve in 100 seconds to create a safer future? Have we the will to do what needs to be done?
How do we approach the task of raising our children in a world overshadowed by an apocalyptic vision of death and destruction as recently witnessed in Beirut?
Will we ever harness technology to create a safe and sustainable future?
What steps can traditional adversaries take to work together before they blow their respective countries into non-existence?
Even if we survive as a species, a future pandemic can almost certainly not be avoided. How will we live with these ongoing existential threats?
How could the discourses of the world’s 4,300 religions align to make the world a safer place?