Every four years, the National Intelligence Council releases a report that lays out the U.S. government agency’s predictions for the future. The latest one was just released and it’s even more grim than you’d expect it to be. The NIC’s “Global Trends: Paradox of Progress” report anticipates a “dark and difficult near future” featuring regional conflicts, terrorism, rising income inequality, climate change, and a more assertive China and Russia.
Per the study:
“Warring will be less and less confined to the battlefield, and more aimed at disrupting societies. … Noncombatants will be increasingly targeted, sometimes to pit ethnic, religious, and political groups against one another to disrupt societal cooperation and coexistence within states. Such strategies suggest a trend toward increasingly costly, but less decisive conflicts.”
As for technological innovation, the NIC predicts that progress will keep causing discontinuities, aggravating “divisions between winners and losers” with biotechnologies “sharpening moral differences.”