I will be the moderator at Swiss Re's 150 Years Anniversary events. My starting point is that the two biggest risks we face are complacency and mono-dimensional thinking.
Complacency, because although all of us who will attend the events are aware of the topics of longevity, food security, climate and sustainable energy, most of us think that these are really someone else's problem: someone else in the world, someone else in the power hierarchy, or perhaps even some other, future, generation. We'd rather think now about other things: our jobs, our incomes, our families, our Facebook profile...
Mono-dimensional thinking because even if we do think properly about these issues, too many of us tend to think about them in isolation. That is easier: we know we need to fund pensions and health care, and work longer with more technology; we know we need to ensure food supply will be adequate for a world of nine billion people and will be well distributed; we know the climate is changing and that human activity is a main cause; and we know that the way we use energy is contributing hugely to climate change. But what we don't do is think about the trade-offs and interconnections: eg, the fact that costlier energy, even if it is "sustainable" in some definition of that word or if it thereby helpfully reduces demand, may make it harder to fund pensions, or to maintain a good food supply.
Only by connecting these topics, confronting the trade-offs and hard choices that lie ahead, and by accepting that the challenges are ours and not someone else's, will we make progress.
Category: Funding longer lives, Food security, Climate/natural disasters, Sustainable energy, Other