Cette page regroupe l'ensemble des publications de Futuribles sur cette thématique (Vigie, revue, bibliographie, études, etc.)
Bino Olivi a été pendant vingt ans, les années soixante et soixante-dix, porte-parole de la Commission européenne. Il nous livre ici la version française mise à jour de son Europa difficile publiée en Italie en 1996. Il s'agit, non pas de la seule histoire politique de la Communauté européenne, ce serait oublier l'ouvrage magistral régulièrement mis à jour du professeur Pierre Gerbet, mais du seul ouvrage qui donne une vision proche de la nôtre mais cependant différente et ...
(100 more words)
Civilizations and the Future of the World
Readers of Futuribles are doubtless familiar with Samuel P. Huntington's thesis (The Clash of Civilizations) that the end of the Cold War and its ideological conflicts is not a signal of the end of history (Francis Fukuyama) but of mounting tensions, even confrontations, between civilizations.
Pierre Béhar shows, however, that Huntington's definition of civilization and his identification of six major regions, mainly on the basis of territory and religion, are simplistic caricatures. In the first place, the Occident is not an homogeneous entity; there have been fertile exchanges throughout history between Europe and the Islamic countries of the Middle East.
According to Béhar, Huntington's thesis is a by-product of American hegemonic will, frustrated by the rise of multi-culturalism on its own territory.
Policies for Innovation
We have long believed that if scientific progress procedes technological progress, the former must be the engine of economic growth and development.
Pierre Bonnaure repudiates this belief. He recalls that innovation, especially the performance of organizations, depends not only on their scientific and technological capacities but even more on human and organizational skills-the synergy of human, technical and organizational factors acting together.
He illustrates his thesis by citing the spectacular recovery of American industry and of certain European enterprises. From them he extracts some useful lessons for promoting innovation in Europe.
Trans-European Transportation Networks. The Missing Link Between History and Geography ?
The coming of a unified market and the consequent growth of trade within the European Union should logically be accompanied by a policy to encourage the knitting of national transportation systems into a Community network. In view of greater cohesion, the more remote regions should be pulled together lest they find themselves marginalized.
From numerous studies dedicated to this issue, the European Council of Essen (1994) eventually selected fourteen priority projects which, if put into place, should also stimulate economic growth and employement in the short and long term.
Claude Martinand, however, deplores the lack of adequate financial provision for these projects and the habitual hesitation entailed in coupling public institutions with the private sector. Without dwelling on the wisdom or desirability of these grand schemes, Martinand's text is testimony to the difficulty of uniting means with ambitions in building Europe.
Le texte de Philippe Roqueplo - tiré de sa communication au colloque international de Fontevraud "Quel environnement au XXIe siècle ? Environnement, maîtrise du long terme et démocratie" - porte sur une question essentielle : celle de la capacité des régimes démocratiques à mettre en oeuvre les politiques dont ils reconnaissent eux-mêmes la nécessité. L'auteur part d'un problème particulier - l'effet de serre - qu'il compare ensuite à un autre problème - celui résultant des pluies acides. À défaut de pouvoir l'éviter ...
(239 more words)
On connaît l'inquiétude que suscitent les émissions de gaz à effet de serre qui pourraient entraîner un réchauffement de la planète lourd de conséquences à long terme. Malgré les incertitudes scientifiques qui subsistent sur ce phénomène, une convention internationale a été adoptée à la conférence de Rio (1992) en vue de la stabilisation de ces émissions à un niveau tel que le développement économique puisse se poursuivre de manière durable sans pour autant entraîner de perturbation anthropique dangereuse du ...
(201 more words)
Il faut rendre hommage à François Géré pour avoir osé sortir la guerre psychologique de l'opprobre dans lequel elle était tenue en France depuis trente-cinq ans. Cette raison est en soi suffisante, tant il paraît insensé d'écarter du champ de la réflexion stratégique un objet aussi déterminant que celui de l'action psychologique. Ce travail remarquable éclaire tout un pan de notre récente histoire militaire, et il ne peut qu'encourager à entreprendre de nouvelles recherches et à ...
(55 more words)
Who Are We? Universal Ethics and Economic Triage
UNESCO took the happy step a few years ago of organizing philosophic forums around questions which are elementary on the surface, but which always give rise to passionate debates between philosophers and historians, and, more generally, between exact scientists and humanists. One such question is "who are we?"
The second of these philosophic forums was hosted by UNESCO in Paris from the 27th to the 30th of March in 1996. The question at issue was the status of moral universalism at the end of the 20th century. We inherited this great idea from the era of enlightenment, but it is now threatened by economic globalization, disintegration of the public domain, the loss of collective referents and fiercely competitive individualism. The combination puts at risk the universal human values on which our societies are founded.
Richard Rorty, a distinguished professor of philosophy at the University of Virginia, was charged with launching the debate. He did so in a particularly provocative manner by showing how the globalized economy amounts to a triage, selecting the privileged who enjoy universal rights from the poor who, by the logic of the economic mechanism, are relegated to the margins of a system which proclaims universal values while becoming more and more unequal. His text, which should obviously be read in its North American context, is published in this issue.
Europe in Search of Sense. For an Alternative European Communication Policy
The ideal of a united Europe suffers from a lack of public acceptance which is due not so much to a shortfall of information as to the absence of public debate around a concerted plan.
Éric Dacheux begins by showing that the communications policy of the European Union aims at the same time to inform citizens and also to seduce them by the creation of images and symbols. He finds that the means employed to these ends are ineffective: In the first place, heavily promoted projects such as "Objective 92" have not produced the promised effects. Secondly, the diffusion of information about Europe is not sufficient to create a European conscience. And finally, the communications policy has always been constrained by day-to-day requirements for building Europe, as dictated by the flow of events. In brief, it has emphasized the duty of adapting more than the desire to live together.
É. Dacheux believes that Europe is lacking the conceptual identity which is needed to inspire the shared vision of a sustainable future. Communications policy of the Commission has been so dominated by the need to sell this or that measure that it is detrimental to the creation of a sense of real citizenship, which is the only thing that could confer a soul on this institutional edifice. In short, the marketing of Europe not only fails to convince, it bores. Consequently, the idea of Europe fails to inspire collective mobilization around a plan which carries direction and hope.
Le projet de Ve Programme-cadre de recherche et de développement de l'Union européenne pour la période 1998-2002, adopté en avril par la Commission européenne (voir futuribles n° 220, mai 1997), sera soumis à l'approbation du Conseil et du Parlement européen au premier semestre 1998. Se posera alors la question du budget affecté à ce programme et de son utilité. Regina Gusmão, tout en soulignant les difficultés d'une telle évaluation, montre que si la part des financements communautaires ...
(99 more words)
Geopolitics: American Idealism
Pierre Béhar provides us with a critical futurist analysis of the treatise by Henry Kissinger, Diplomacy, which going beyond historical narrative reveals the very specific origins of United States foreign policy and illuminates geopolitical issues at the dawn of the twenty first century.
According to Kissinger, the diplomatic traditions of Europe and the United States are based on very different philosophies: Europe reasons following Richelieu in terms of "Raison d'État" and geopolitical power relationships: the United States applies to interstate relations the moral principles which should govern relations between individuals. Since Woodrow Wilson, American diplomacy has been based on "the certainty of a properly messianic mission", the inner conviction that it embodies an ideal moral order and must impose it on the whole world.
Kissinger explains this concept particularly by the geostrategic position of the United States. He also criticizes it without complacency by denouncing the imperialism of the American dream, its consequences, domestically and internationally. He shows the perverse effect of a policy blind to realities, sufficiently powerful to destabilize the world but insufficiently powerful to impose a universal moral order on it. Finally, starting from an analysis of the specific positions of the United States with respect to other countries and regions, Kissinger sketches a panorama of worldwide geopolitical evolution and shows how American diplomacy will have to renounce its universalist dreams and learn to live in a multipolar world.
Europe along the British Path? The Euro and defence in the "Scenarios 2012"
The present debate about Europe is excessively - if not exclusively - centered on the Euro and the convergence criteria of Maastricht. But, emphasize Albert Bressand and Emmanuelle Maincent, the major issues lie elsewhere; they are related more to Europe's capacity to adopt an economic policy and a common foreign and defence policy. And seen in this light, the United Kingdom could well play a driving role in part because it is economically more advanced than the continental countries and on the other hand because of the Franco-British defence axis.
The authors present five scenarios for Europe in 2012 which are constructed on the basis of two main axes: on one hand the degree of economic integration, on the other the degree of "Europeanization" of defence policy which are both viewed from the point of view of "European governance".
On the basis of five contrasting hypothesis on economic integration and three hypothesis on foreign and defence policy, they present:
- two extremes scenarios that of Non Europe and that of the United States of Europe ;
- three hybrid scenarios: a scenario which contrary to all expectations would see instituted the common and foreign defence policy, not the Euro. The other the Euro without the common foreign defence policy and the third would be distinguished by differentiated Europes.
According to the authors, the United Kingdom could play a major role in this logic of political and economic governance. Economically it opposes to Franco German concepts a pragmatism which has proven its relevance especially by relying on the logic of the market. Politically because the British, in addition to the fact that they represent advanced democracy, have a long term vision of Europe which the continental countries scarcely do.
A real message of welcome to Tony Blair, this article provides useful material to leave behind the purely technical debate over the adoption of the Euro.
European R&D Policy towards the Fifth Framework Program of Research and Development of the European Union
On April 9, 1997 the European Commission on the proposal of Edith Cresson adopted its draft Fifth European Research Framework. Program which according to the Commission is to represent a real break in relation to the four preceding programs. A break in the approach will occur, which from now on consists of concentrating the research effort on only six themes which are both close to citizens' aspirations and the requirement of business competitiveness: renewable resources and ecosystem, user friendly information society, competitive and sustainable growth, international cooperation, innovation and participation by SMEs, and human potential. A break also in operations, which will be distinguished by a concern for coordination among the various activities and more management flexibility, is impending. Knowing moreover that the largest part of the Fifth Framework Program, which covers the period 1998-2002, will be carried out in the context of new budget guidelines required from 1999 to succeed the present budget framework, the Commission has not formally proposed a financial envelop at this stage. It considers nonetheless that the relative weight of the Fifth Framework Program in terms of the percentage of GNP of European Union should reach at least the same level reached by the Fourth Framework Program on average between 1995 and 1998 and that the research effort should tend towards that undertaken by the major competitors of the Union.
We publish here:
- a brief description of the direction of this program as adopted by the Commission, a program, we emphasize, which has yet to be approved by the Council and European Parliament in the first quarter of 1998 and whose budget has not been set;
- the comments of Pierre Bonnaure, former Director of Research and Programs at the European Commission;
- the point of view expressed by Francis Mer, Chairman of Usinor Sacilor, President of the National Association (France) for Technical Research at a Colloquium organised by this Association about the Fifth Framework Program at Paris on April 21 and 22, 1997.
Alors que la Conférence intergouvernementale (CIG) doit s'achever en juin 1997 et semble néanmoins piétiner, quelles sont les perspectives à moyen et à long terme de l'Union européenne ? L'association Futuribles International a invité Jérôme Vignon, directeur de la Cellule de prospective de la Commission européenne (CdP) à venir nous l'expliquer au cours d'une table ronde qui s'est tenue à Paris le 27 février 1997. Le texte que nous publions ici rend compte brièvement de ...
(3 more words)
Ce numéro est la dernière publication en date du Philip Morris Institute for Public Policy Research (PMI), créé en 1993, qui par la publication de documents de réflexion et l'organisation de conférences et séminaires portant sur les principaux enjeux politiques de l'Europe, vise à créer un forum international de discussion entre décideurs politiques, hauts fonctionnaires et experts de l'Union européenne. Les premières pages sont consacrées aux réactions de divers ministres, députés et experts aux précédentes publications (« Le ...
(228 more words)
France: the Defense Industry on the Defensive
The end of the Cold War marked the beginning of an intense restructuring of security and defense policies in the West. Especially in a country like France which simultaneously is rejoining NATO little by little all the while pushing for the creation of the continental defense pillar based on the Franco-German alliance.
To the new doctrine which is being outlined, there should correspond a reform of the armed forces which is well advanced, but also a restructuring of the arms industry which will necessarily occur by alliances or even mergers at the European level. But on this scene there reigns the greatest disorder as the Europeans have not given up their national ambitions nor clearly chosen their allies and have as a result not defined a coherent industrial strategy.
European defense industries find themselves in a situation of weakness behind by at least one war by comparison with the industries of the United States which are already getting ready for the war of the future with a high dose of new technology.
The Thomson Affair
The plan to privatize the Thomson firm and the handover of Thomson Multimedia to the Korean Daewoo has caused an ink-flow into France during the autumn of 1996. We are publishing two points of view about this case: one by Michel Drancourt who sees in it a striking illustration of French capitalism, the other by André-Yves Portnoff who reacts against the abandonment of a high potential activity out of a purely accounting "Colbertist " point of view.
These two points of view, which are more complementary than opposed, are very instructive about the weaknesses of French society, or rather of its elite, which persists in imposing outdated rules- of-the-game on firms.
A New Deal fo Research and Technology
After having recalled how greatly research and development efforts were concentrated in the triad with nonetheless remarkable spurt in the NICs, Pierre Papon paints a panorama of the new economic, social, political and scientific context in which research is carried out.
The author shows in particular that the economic constraints (beginning with the requirement for short-term profitability) and social constraints (in particular society's demands for "reassurance") are scarcely favourable to the indispensable long term investment which research requires. He particularly denounces the flaws of a state more "firefighter" than strategist whose priorities are more dictated by immediate problems and the need to respond to societal demand than by clearly defined long term objectives.
Pierre Papon considers that there is a "research crisis" resulting from misunderstandings among the scientific community, public authorities and society. In particular the latter two expect from research immediate solutions to current problems when the research effort can only be productive in the long term. In the end, he argues for a true research policy based on forward thinking and attacks the dangers of an excessively utilitarian and short-sighted approach by the state and society.
Ce petit ouvrage de la Commission européenne part du principe que les activités spatiales ne concernent pas que les scientifiques, mais comportent également des dimensions stratégiques et économiques, qui affectent d'ores et déjà notre vie quotidienne et qui prendront encore plus d'importance dans les années à venir. C'est pourquoi la Commission a mis en place, il y a dix ans, une structure propre, consacrée au domaine spatial, et complémentaire de l'activité de l'Agence Spatiale européenne ...
(182 more words)
L'édition 1997 de L'économie française présente dans une première partie un bilan rigoureux de la conjoncture, des principales tendances et des grands problèmes de l'économie française. Cette année, la seconde partie de l'ouvrage est consacrée plus spécifiquement à certains aspects majeurs des débats actuels sur l'Europe. Enfin, une chronologie détaillée de l'année et une banque de données viennent compléter les commentaires. Pour l'année 1996, l'économie française a connu une phase de ralentissement ...
(318 more words)
Cet ouvrage est né d'une initiative de la Commission tiers monde de l'Église catholique (COTMEC, qui s'efforce depuis 1968 d'alerter les chrétiens et les non-chrétiens sur le fossé nord-sud, les injustices, etc.) qui a demandé à des auteurs parfois reconnus (Riccardo Petrella pour l'économie, Alain Durand pour l'éthique chrétienne, notamment) d'analyser la crise actuelle : suppression d'emplois par milliers, flexibilisation du travail, creusement des inégalités, emballement de la spéculation financière... Face à cette ...
(241 more words)
Japan: a "Useful" International Power
It has become obvious to Modjtaba Sadria that Japan will become a great power, not only by acquiring the classic means but also by adding a new characteristic to power: utility.
The "usefulness" of Japan will come from its unavoidability but also mainly because it will have a "unique ability to respond to various needs of its Asiatic partners", including its Chinese ones, with whom it will have to develop partnering relationships.
Ce chapitre est extrait du Rapport Vigie 2016 de Futuribles International, qui propose un panorama structuré des connaissances et des incertitudes des experts que l'association a mobilisés pour explorer les évolutions des 15 à 35 prochaines années sur 11 thématiques.