21ST Century Democratic Capitalism: A Time for Action and a Time to Lead

21ST Century Democratic Capitalism: A Time for Action and a Time to Lead

Elias G. Carayannis (GWU, USA) and Aris Kaloudis (NIFU STEP, Norway)
DOI: 10.4018/jsesd.2010010101
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Abstract

Starting on September 11, 2001, and following both actions and reactions around the world, it may well be that we have arrived at a major tipping point in terms of socio-economic development, political reform, as well as many other global issues - from financial and economic coordination to climate change as well as hunger and disease challenges in the developing world. On November 9, 1989 (more than 20 years ago), the world watched as the Berlin Wall was tumbling and with it the Cold War was slipping into memory as the morning fog. During the last two decades, progress was accomplished on many fronts but great opportunities were also missed or wasted both within the US (for instance, health care and social security reforms) as well as around the world where the Washington Consensus mantra of privatization and unbridled globalization led to the socioeconomic polarization of many former Warsaw pact countries as well as former parts of the Soviet Union and in effect made many people around the world cynical as to the capacity of free market regimes to allow for equitable and sustainable economic development along civic renaissance.
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危机

When written in Chinese, the word crisis is composed of two characters. One represents danger and the other represents opportunity (John. F. Kennedy, 1959)

Starting on September 11, 2001, and following both actions and reactions around the world, it may well be that we have arrived at a major tipping point in terms of socio-economic development, political reform, as well as many other global issues - from financial and economic coordination to climate change as well as hunger and disease challenges in the developing world.

On November 9, 1989 (more than 20 years ago), the world watched as the Berlin Wall was tumbling and with it the Cold War was slipping into memory as the morning fog. During the last two decades, progress was accomplished on many fronts but great opportunities were also missed or wasted both within the US (for instance, health care and social security reforms) as well as around the world where the Washington Consensus mantra of privatization and unbridled globalization led to the socio-economic polarization of many former Warsaw pact countries as well as former parts of the Soviet Union and in effect made many people around the world cynical as to the capacity of free market regimes to allow for equitable and sustainable economic development along civic renaissance.

Proper, coordinated and sustained action and leadership on the part of the developed rich countries may indeed allow the world to move towards peace and prosperity through meaningful and effective change. Lack thereof, may indeed result into an apocalyptic nightmare whether through short term financial defaults not only of firms (such as banks) but also countries (such as Iceland) or long term global catastrophes such as global warming and other environmental disasters.

The window of opportunity will not be open for long so leaders and citizens of goodwill from all continents and countries need to get beyond narrow self-interests and overcome failures of courage and/or imagination to envision and architect a better tomorrow for all.

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