Topic of the Conference

 

The term megatrend was coined by John Naisbitt in 1982. Back then he defined ten global megatrends that he viewed as important, seemingly unstoppable long-term shifts in the progress of societies. The goal of the OBIC conference is to discuss key, long-term challenges—megatrends—of the Asian region, with a special focus on digitalization in countries’ security and foreign policies.

In recent years, Asian societies have been confronted by the rise of China transforming the Asia-Pacific region, particularly in economy- and security-related areas. At the same time, India and Indonesia are also rising economic powers that are substantially changing the shape of Asian economic power relations. The rapid growth of markets in the region has become more and more important as an element of global growth, however, challenges such as migration, urbanization, severe environmental problems (the climate challenge, air pollution, etc.) must be dealt with too. Over the course of the last decade, these tensions have often turned into local political disputes (i.e. in the South China Sea) and new initiatives (such as the Belt and Road Initiative) have come under fire and have also been fiercely debated in some countries too. 

One of the megatrends, to which special attention ought to be paid at the conference, is digitalization and its significance in countries’ security and foreign policies. Recent technological developments have allowed observers to realize that a new wave of the technology revolution is about to transform the global economy and politics as well. Digitalization, 5G networks, the Internet of things, artificial intelligence, and their profound impact are already here, however the way we are doing business, implementing our economic policies, and pursuing foreign policies is about to change more significantly than we could ever have imagined.

 

Topics and panel themes:

 1     Digitalization

 2     Demographics

 3     Economic interconnectedness

 4     Economic power shift

 5     Climate change

 6     Urbanization

 7     Migration