2001-2010: A decade to remember

As we bid farewell to 2010 and look forward to 2011, it is worth noting how the global developments of the first decade of the 21st century have impacted our lives…

One of the most revolutionary changes of this decade has been the transformation in the way we communicate.  In particular, the mobile phones became cheaply available providing access to telecommunications for the very first time in poorer countries and benefiting billions of people across the world. The internet spread phenomenally to usher an exciting digital media age. The evolution of social networking sites like Twitter, YouTube, Facebook and others boosted citizen journalism.  This in turn redefined the concepts of marketing and PR, and most importantly dismantled the barriers to the free flow of information, empowering global citizens to unite and interact on one platform. And to cap it all, cutting edge devices like ipods, smart phones, tablet computers, game consoles, on –demand television and podcasts radically changed the way we consume media.

On political front, the tragic events of 9/11 dramatically changed the dynamics of global security. New alliances were forged, old alliances went to war.  Sadly, terrorism spread – killing thousands from Mumbai to Madrid, London to Karachi.  And, as we step into the next decade, terrorism will remain one of the biggest threats to global peace and harmony.

Climate change became an important global issue, which scientists say, if unchecked, may turn into a major natural catastrophe during this century. The huddle of nations in Copenhagen brought together to discuss climate change in 2009 yielded little result yet this is going to be a burning issue as we move into the next decade.  Consequently it is vital that we all do our bit to become green citizens.

Economically, the recession shook the foundations of the global economy, affecting millions across the world. Clearly, there were structural flaws in the world’s financial system.  To fix the mess, the G20 was galvanised into action. It signalled a strategic shift in global power bringing together the developed and developing nations.

The first decade also saw the economic rise of China and India as well as new innovations from developing countries: the world’s cheapest car, nano-technology and $100 laptops. China orchestrated an awesome Olympics in 2008 and South Africa, a brilliant soccer world cup in 2010. The United States elected the first black president and the EU grew from 15 to 27 members’ states.

The forthcoming decade will be exciting as the rise of new economic powers will create a dynamic work force enabling greater exchange of knowledge, ideas and technology. The global citizens and digital natives will come to power and it will create new markets and more opportunities for growth. It is important that we seize this opportunity and together build a prosperous world.

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