Curating Content To Support Learning About Humanity's Transition

Posts tagged with:  Bradd Libby

By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 25 Apr 22

Images from Unsplash by Spencer Davis and Avel Chuklanov   The basics of life – energy, minerals, water, food – are not evenly distributed around the world, so peace and prosperity depend strongly on the ability to move goods and people quickly and cheaply. That’s how a seemingly obscure technology revolution starting in the mid-1950s created the foundations for the international trade on which the modern economy depends today – in the process dramatically reducing the risk of famines. With the world on the brink of another global food crisis, this is a story with crucial lessons for our times …

The Shipping Container Disruption Helped End Famines (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 6) Read More »

Images from Unsplash by Spencer Davis and Avel Chuklanov   The basics of life – energy, minerals, water, food – are not evenly distributed around the world, so peace and prosperity depend strongly on the ability to move goods and people quickly and cheaply. That’s how a seemingly obscure technology revolution starting in the mid-1950s created the foundations for the …

The Shipping Container Disruption Helped End Famines (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 6) Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 24 Mar 22

A global food crisis is looming, with high natural gas prices driving up the cost of ammonia fertilizer and the war in Ukraine threatening this year’s crops from both there and Russia. The consequences of mishandling this crisis could be dire. Research by complexity theorist Yaneer Bar-Yam suggests that high food prices are directly connected to riots. High food prices precipitated the 2011 ‘Arab Spring’, the 2007 Mexican ‘tortilla riots’, and numerous other incidents of unrest. Now we might be on the cusp of a new wave of chaos if we are not able to manage the global supply. To …

The Coming Global Fertilizer Crisis – and How to Solve it (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 5) Read More »

A global food crisis is looming, with high natural gas prices driving up the cost of ammonia fertilizer and the war in Ukraine threatening this year’s crops from both there and Russia. The consequences of mishandling this crisis could be dire. Research by complexity theorist Yaneer Bar-Yam suggests that high food prices are directly connected to riots. High food prices …

The Coming Global Fertilizer Crisis – and How to Solve it (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 5) Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 7 Mar 22

Fence in the colours of the national flag of Ukraine, photo by Tina Hartung on Unsplash We are now at a crossroads in history, and no path forward looks pleasant. The war in Ukraine is killing innocent civilians, disrupting lives, and shaking the markets in energy, food and other commodities, making us wonder how we let ourselves become so complacent in trading with Russia, whose government has shown such little respect for the rights of its neighbors and its own citizens. The obvious path seems to be to boost oil, gas, coal, food and metals production from friendly countries. Cut …

The Disruption of Slavery Unveils Fastest Path to End Today’s Wars (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 4) Read More »

Fence in the colours of the national flag of Ukraine, photo by Tina Hartung on Unsplash We are now at a crossroads in history, and no path forward looks pleasant. The war in Ukraine is killing innocent civilians, disrupting lives, and shaking the markets in energy, food and other commodities, making us wonder how we let ourselves become so complacent …

The Disruption of Slavery Unveils Fastest Path to End Today’s Wars (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 4) Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 23 Feb 22

  When people figure out how to do something that previously only nature had done, this new technology can completely transform the possibility space for a sector while making old ways of doing things obsolete – and all in a surprisingly short period of time. While the time can be very long between when an idea is first dreamt up and when its first practical demonstration appears, the time between the first practical demonstration and the idea becoming  commonplace can be quite abrupt.   Flight – from mythology to reality Cave paintings suggest that human beings have long imagined being …

How Synthetic Industries Replaced Natural Sources and Transformed the World (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 3) Read More »

  When people figure out how to do something that previously only nature had done, this new technology can completely transform the possibility space for a sector while making old ways of doing things obsolete – and all in a surprisingly short period of time. While the time can be very long between when an idea is first dreamt up …

How Synthetic Industries Replaced Natural Sources and Transformed the World (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 3) Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 17 Feb 22

Europe is amid an energy crisis of epic proportions, with a shortage in the supply of fossil fuels causing painfully high energy prices. And today, French President Macron wants to revitalize nuclear to solve this challenge. But if you understand the pattern of disruption, you will see why this might not be so straightforward. When it comes to energy crises, I’m not just talking about today – I’m also talking about OPEC’s 1973 oil embargo, which sent fuel prices soaring. In its aftermath, French Prime Minister Pierre Messmer announced a proposal, the ‘Messmer Plan’, whose intention was to get France’s …

France is Forgetting the Most Powerful Force in the Universe (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 2) Read More »

Europe is amid an energy crisis of epic proportions, with a shortage in the supply of fossil fuels causing painfully high energy prices. And today, French President Macron wants to revitalize nuclear to solve this challenge. But if you understand the pattern of disruption, you will see why this might not be so straightforward. When it comes to energy crises, …

France is Forgetting the Most Powerful Force in the Universe (The Pattern of Disruption, Part 2) Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 10 Feb 22

The first in a new series about how the ‘pattern of disruption’ explains how our societies and economies change and evolve, and where they might be heading. It’s often assumed that ‘disruption’ is a uniquely modern phenomenon. But it’s not. Technology disruptions can be found at the heart of major societal and civilizational upheavals going back to even the earliest human settlements. At RethinkX, we’ve discovered that the rapid and transformative adoption of new technologies – and with them new ideas, new behaviors, and new business models – has followed a repeatable pattern for at least hundreds of years, maybe …

The Pattern of Disruption Read More »

The first in a new series about how the ‘pattern of disruption’ explains how our societies and economies change and evolve, and where they might be heading. It’s often assumed that ‘disruption’ is a uniquely modern phenomenon. But it’s not. Technology disruptions can be found at the heart of major societal and civilizational upheavals going back to even the earliest …

The Pattern of Disruption Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 22 Nov 21

Decision-makers at the COP26 UN climate summit might do well to remind themselves of a game called ‘Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’. Because only by understanding the interconnection of the world’s problems can we recognize how they can be rapidly solved by addressing them systemically at the root. Invented in the 1990s by three college students, ‘Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’ was based on the idea that prolific actor Kevin Bacon has appeared in films with a vast number of other actors. For example, Arnold Schwarzenegger was in the movie ‘Dave’ with Laura Linney who was in ‘Mystic River’ with …

How Kevin Bacon Can Save the Planet and Regenerate the Earth Read More »

Decision-makers at the COP26 UN climate summit might do well to remind themselves of a game called ‘Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon’. Because only by understanding the interconnection of the world’s problems can we recognize how they can be rapidly solved by addressing them systemically at the root. Invented in the 1990s by three college students, ‘Six Degrees of Kevin …

How Kevin Bacon Can Save the Planet and Regenerate the Earth Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 13 Oct 21

Photo by Zdeněk Macháček on Unsplash Many scientists now believe that the Amazon is close to a tipping point, after which it would become a savanna rather than a rainforest. Instead of pulling greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere, it will start pumping them into the atmosphere, leading so-called flying rivers – bands of moisture in the air that bring rainfall to the continent – to dry up. “As many as 10,000 species may be at risk of dying off,” reported Bloomberg. By 2018, as much as 17% of the Amazon rainforest had already been destroyed. According to Time magazine, …

To Save the Rainforests, Stop Doing the Things That Are Destroying Them Read More »

Photo by Zdeněk Macháček on Unsplash Many scientists now believe that the Amazon is close to a tipping point, after which it would become a savanna rather than a rainforest. Instead of pulling greenhouse gases out of the atmosphere, it will start pumping them into the atmosphere, leading so-called flying rivers – bands of moisture in the air that bring …

To Save the Rainforests, Stop Doing the Things That Are Destroying Them Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 23 Sep 21

You would probably not willingly drink contaminated water or eat rotten food. But every day billions of people breathe polluted air and do not stop to think twice about it. That’s why air pollution is slashing the lives of billions of people around the world by up to six years, according to a recent study by researchers at the University of Chicago. With only a third of the world’s countries home to legally-mandated outdoor air quality standards, the air pollution crisis has accelerated alongside climate change and biodiversity loss.   Gaseous emissions, both the kind that affect the climate on a …

Air pollution endangers billions, but a handful of technologies can make air clean again this decade Read More »

You would probably not willingly drink contaminated water or eat rotten food. But every day billions of people breathe polluted air and do not stop to think twice about it. That’s why air pollution is slashing the lives of billions of people around the world by up to six years, according to a recent study by researchers at the University …

Air pollution endangers billions, but a handful of technologies can make air clean again this decade Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 14 Sep 21

North Atlantic right whales face an increasing risk of extinction due to climate change. According to a new study by scientists at Cornell University, warming oceans have driven the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale population from its traditional and protected habitat in the Gulf of Maine into cooler waters of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where they have been exposed to more lethal ship strikes, disastrous commercial fishing entanglements and greatly reduced calving rates. The study in the journal Oceanography, warns that if this continues the right whale populations will decline and potentially become extinct in coming decades. The …

Despite Growing Extinction Risk, This is How Whales Could Flourish Like Never Before Read More »

North Atlantic right whales face an increasing risk of extinction due to climate change. According to a new study by scientists at Cornell University, warming oceans have driven the critically endangered North Atlantic right whale population from its traditional and protected habitat in the Gulf of Maine into cooler waters of the Gulf of St. Lawrence, where they have been …

Despite Growing Extinction Risk, This is How Whales Could Flourish Like Never Before Read More »


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