Inside This Issue
ARTICLE | October 17, 2016
The 20th century is a record of momentous, multidimensional challenges, remarkable achievements and unprecedented missed opportunities. The world community missed a unique opportunity at the end of WWII to abolish war between nation-states. Instead the peace degenerated into a nuclear arms race and a Cold War. At the end of the Cold War it missed the opportunity to abolish nuclear weapons and build a truly democratic institution for global governance. Instead the number of nuclear weapon states has proliferated, neoliberalism has triumphed and the world has been transformed into a global casino. Today humanity confronts daunting challenges. Once again these challenges have generated an unprecedented opportunity for rapid and radical transformation founded on new ideas, values, centers of power, institutions and policies. This issue of Cadmus explores these multidimensional challenges and the unprecedented opportunities now before us.
Part 1 of this issue contains a selection of papers by WAAS Fellows presented at an international colloquium on “New Paradigm and Planetary Engagement: A Call for Responsibility” at Kyung Hee University in Seoul on September 21-23, 2016. The negative conception of peace as merely the absence of war and the conception of security in narrow military terms provide inadequate and inappropriate direction for human development in the 21st century. This part contains articles that examine essential components of a positive, comprehensive and integrated approach to human security. Alberto Zucconi calls for radical changes in higher education to meet the needs of the fourth Industrial Revolution. Winston Nagan examines the concept, basis and implications of a human-centered approach to development. Neantro Saavedra-Rivano stresses the central role of human capital in social advancement and proposes a novel strategy for financing massive investments to develop the potential of human beings.
Part 2 of this issue focuses on social power—the invisible elephant in the room that which energizes, directs, shapes and determines the results of all human activities. For decades the effort to formulate universal, positivistic, value-free principles in the social sciences led to neglect of this all-pervasive, all-important issue. Social power is the underlying source of humanity’s creative social energies and unlimited potential, which social organization channels and converts into myriad different forms of effective power. The patterns of distribution of that power politically, economically, socially, intellectually and culturally determine the overall vibrancy and creativity of society and its capacity to generate freedom, security, welfare and well-being for its members. This issue contains a selection of articles prepared for the upcoming WAAS-WUC colloquium and PG level course on Social Power to be held at the Inter-University Centre, Dubrovnik and live online from October 31 to November 2, 2016. Garry Jacobs traces the historical evolution of diplomacy from military and political negotiations to mutually beneficial economic, social and cultural relations and calls for establishment of an international institution on human security for further thinking and policy formation from the new perspective. Emil Constantinescu explains how time warp is affecting our lives at the level of values and how a change in the way we think is necessary so humanity may march forward without the unnecessary stumbles that usually accompany ignorance. Human connectivity is the main theme of Janani Harish’s paper. She looks to history as a guide to trace historical precedents and explains how effective logistics can accelerate human progress. Herwig Schopper emphasizes the necessity for the common citizen to be aware of scientific knowledge and raises an important question: What role can international scientific institutions like WAAS play in addressing global issues? Murugesan Chandrasekaran makes an insightful remark on the nature of reality and the mind’s tendency for dualistic thinking and explains that the subjective and objective dimensions of reality are interdependent and inseparable. Saulo Casali Bahia questions the origin of social power and how legal power is generated by the society.
Part 3 of this issue presents a selection of articles by members of the New Economic Theory Working Group reflecting the efforts of WAAS to develop a framework for human-centered, integrated theory of economy and social science. These articles are based on presentations made at the XIII International Colloquium at the University of Lisbon in May 2016. Augusto Santos Silva explores the fundamental characteristics of globalization, and offers a solution for rebalancing the globalization process: he suggests redistribution of powers and resources in order to reduce inequality and stresses the need for metanarratives which should be centered on democracy, law and development. Joachim Spangenberg calls for a transdisciplinary approach in natural and social sciences. No single discipline, he points out, can capture reality fully or claim to have the complete knowledge. Orio Giarini emphasizes the very important role of insurance in the modern service economy, which has been largely ignored or dismissed by contemporary economists. Drawing on extensive experience in the insurance industry, he argues that new economic theory need to take into account risk and uncertainty, elements of complexity associated with the modern Service Economy. The debt-based approach to economic development followed by conventional economics, Dimitrios Kyriakou explains, keeps the losses public while keeping the benefits private. He proposes making finance less attractive by introducing regulations, taxations and other claw back schemes that organize the financial market. Robert Hoffman’s article takes the concept of “deep thinking” as its frame of reference and stresses the need for an awareness of complex global systems, for without an inherent understanding of complexity, there will be little hope to solve global challenges that humanity faces today.
We hope you enjoy this issue and invite reader comments and responses on the articles for publication in the next issue.