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The Road to 2040

Dec. 2, 2015 We look into the future and forecast what the world will look like in a quarter of a century. We predict several disruptions in the global structure by 2040 and conclude that much of the instability over the next 25 years will be focused in the European and Asian continents.

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  • Last updated: September 26
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The United States
Europe
Russia
China
The Middle East
Conclusion: The World After Eurasia

A Word on Geopolitical Forecasting

Forty years ago, in 1975, the world was transfixed with pictures of helicopters taking off from the U.S. Embassy in Saigon. The pictures created a sense not only of American vulnerability but also of decline. This sense was compounded by the state of American society. The oil embargo of 1973 had wreaked havoc on the American economy. Inflation was over 9 percent. Unemployment was at 8.5 percent. A 30-year mortgage on a home was available at about 9 percent interest. Just a decade before, the country witnessed the assassinations of John F. Kennedy and Martin Luther King, Jr. and riots throughout the United States in their wake. Richard Nixon had resigned as president a year before.

It was a reasonable assumption that the United States was in deep and irreversible decline in the world and

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