'Reshape Global Cooperation to Tackle Risks to Humanity, Foundation Urges

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A US$5 million prize competition is seeking to identify new models of global cooperation capable of handling the most serious threats to humanity including climate change, weapons of mass destruction and extreme poverty

“The Global Challenges Prize 2017: A New Shape,” was launched by the Stockholm-based Global Challenges Foundation, with the aim of deepening understanding of global risks and galvanising more effective responses to them. The prize competition is based on the premise that the current system of global governance that has evolved since World War II is no longer equipped to deal with 21st century risks that transcend national borders and can affect populations anywhere in the world.

“Today’s risks are so dangerous and so global in their nature they’ve outrun the international system’s ability to deal with them,” said Global Challenges Foundation founder, Laszlo Szombatfalvy, an investor, author and philanthropist who built his career in Sweden through the successful analysis of financial risk.

“We’re trying to solve today’s problems with yesterday’s tools. We believe a new shape of collaboration is needed to address the most critical challenges in our globalised world.”

According to a statement, the New Shape Prize will ask entrants to design frameworks for international decision-making equipped to address today’s global challenges with a focus on climate change, major environmental damage, violent conflict (including nuclear and other weapons of mass destruction) and extreme poverty.

“We believe that the human ingenuity that has allowed us to eradicate diseases, bring down poverty levels and stabilize the hole in the ozone layer, can, if properly channeled, play a role in averting the greatest risks to our survival,” Szombatfalvy said.
“If we can tap this creativity and apply it to designing a better decision-making system for the world community, then we will have a chance of preserving our world for future generations.”