We live in a world of what I like to call ‘overlapping communities of fate’ where everyday life – work, money, beliefs, as well as of trade, communications and finance, not to speak of the environment – connects us all with increasing intensity.
The word for this story is ‘globalisation’ and since 1945 we have sought to build international institutions that might regulate and govern aspects of it based on universal principles of equality of all human beings.
Half a century on, the international community has reached its next clear moment of decisive choice. I am an optimist. It is still possible to build on the achievements of the post-second world war era. But we have to be clear about the dangers and difficulties. A combination of developments points towards a very disturbing combination of negative factors. We are at a turning-point, choices are now being made that will determine the fate of the globe for decades to come.