Submitted by gnagorez t3_10dvern in Futurology

Currently there are joint organizations and work from different countries (UN for example), however, it is well known that certain nations prefer not to join, especially the powers, Russia, China, USA, among others.


And examples in movies or books where nations come together to face a common problem. A meteorite that comes to earth, a rebellion of the machines or AI, etc. However, those scenarios as of today seem very distant, more than anything science fiction. Likewise, seeing these nations work together does not seem to be viable in the near future.


For all of the above, I would like to discuss realistic and possible scenarios in the coming decades where X situation leads nations to work together and society changes due to greater globalization and unification.


For example, a struggle for resources that are running out faster year after year or to find a solution to the lack of them, is what I think is more likely to happen in the coming decades (without changing the century) rather than a rebellion of the machines or some kind of meteor that is going to crash on earth.



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wwarnout t1_j4nfzjf wrote

I can't imagine a situation dire enough, short of one that kills the majority of the human population.


ApprehensiveCut2058 t1_j4ocoro wrote

So like the current trajectory, but not annoyingly played out over decades, way beyond our attention span.


ourstobuild t1_j4pz1fg wrote

There is no way even a threat that kills the majority of the human population would enable countries to find one leader. Cooperation? Maybe, but I wouldn't be surprised if even that would fall apart quicker than you'd imagine.

Influential people would just start throwing threats. If you won't do what I want you to do, I'll pull out.... etc etc.


AdSea9329 t1_j4pnw2m wrote

i think this is very true. scares resources like catastrophes are not distributed evenly, any nation which can gain an advantage will do so to a certain extend. The day you got only a few people left, they will have to work together if they want to prosper. Look at the increasing ecological pressure, the consequence is less a collaboration than a currently still quite amicable trade war and race for technology. imo this will turn ugly once shocks of damages with significant magnitude will hit.


OBwriter92107 t1_j4ni2hm wrote

Ministry for the Future is the book that you’re seeking. Asks the question what if governments decided climate change was an existential threat and collaborated to prevent systemic collapse.


BeardedGlass t1_j4p8ku7 wrote

Realistically, we can’t really stop the collapse now. We can at most slow it down enough so we can adapt to the change it will bring.


WarProgenitor t1_j4qti4o wrote

Says who, and with what supporting evidence?

I refuse to believe our planet is already a lost cause due to climate change, just because it would cure some cynics through validation.


Xanjis t1_j4tehjj wrote

Not the planet nor even the human species is at risk. Just our current level of civilization.


Feisty-Juan t1_j4ng61k wrote

We’re a tribal group of critters. We can’t even get our system of government in the U.S. 2 sides to agree to pay the bills and keep everything going so we don’t go into economic collapse! Division is hard wired in our brains and greed, power and fear will never let us be a global union. Especially if the world goes into economic chaos! Then we’ll be living the Jonny Mnemonic/ Freejack future. I’m already thinking of writing a Soylent Green cookbook;)


rogue_scholarx t1_j4o9pg4 wrote

This is why I think the only acceptable answer is: aliens.

We'd still think tribally, but "human" would have a shot at becoming the new primary tribe.

God help the xenos.


Feisty-Juan t1_j4oc2ws wrote

If something has the technology to travel interstellar space and come to earth with any bad intentions? It would be exactly like that terrible Ron Hubbard movie battle field earth. Except no happy ending. Just mankind oppressed or annihilated. I’m hopeful there’s a Star track structure in the universe and we are protected by the United federation of planets and they have a plan to keep us from destroying ourselves. Because we are well on our way to doing that right now.but to believe we would rally together to defend our planet and not be completely destroyed is just funny! Resistance is futile.


rogue_scholarx t1_j4or0pu wrote

We'd best hope for friendliness because physics make orbital bombardment a fairly one-sided nightmare.


Feisty-Juan t1_j4orlhe wrote

Bombardment is a way of killing primitive primates use. I’m sure they would have much more high tech capabilities to remove the surface nuisance that is humanity


Frank_chevelle t1_j4pswyt wrote

Except there would be groups of people who would try to help the aliens, others who would take advantage of the situation to try and make money etc…..


knova___ t1_j4p3mgw wrote

A single ethnostate would solve that issue..the us and the uk and Canada are essentially the same culture or atleast have similar values and ideas so those would make a formidable force against the rest of the world if ethnicity in the west was erased and everyone became grey. It would be too easy for this polyethnic race to think and believe it’s superior and eliminate the base ethnicities.


Comeino t1_j4nvxlm wrote

What is the purpose of operating as a global civilization if we keep being apes?


Odd-Ice6464 t1_j4nisz3 wrote

If science may ever lead to formation of Avengers, then eventually a Thanos will appear to unite all nations against him.


Chroderos t1_j4nmvaz wrote

If you’re talking about something like an actual unified global government stronger and more centralized than the UN or something… I think that will never happen short of an alien invasion where the survival of humanity is at stake and we are truly, truly desperate. Maybe not even then.

However, there will always be an ad hoc international governance structure in the form of institutions like the UN, and the patchwork of various multiparty transnational treaties that will bind some, but not all, nations together on specific shared goals and areas of cooperation and understanding.


xGenocidest t1_j4opmig wrote

AI taking over, or Aliens showing up and taking over. Don't see any situation where everyone comes together without a huge % of the human population being wiped out, and us having 0 choice but to fake it for so long a few generations later we forget about it. Always gonna be some bad apples, so the AI and Aliens have to win to make sure no asshole gets enough followers to start shit.


7ECA t1_j4o51ms wrote

If Covid hasn't done it

If Climate change hasn't done it



Vjcixuxuxuxuxu t1_j4o9pmk wrote

I am pretty sure the US parties would still obstruct each other if there was an alien invasion or some other disaster.. Better to let the country get destroyed than working with the “other” party.


Peet_Pann t1_j4p9rj6 wrote

Own the libs!!!! Mythology said the world was gonna burn!!! We tried by destroying the environment, but this is faster!!! Told you to accept our Mythology!!!! /s


Warrior_Runding t1_j4t9pna wrote

Let's be super clear: the conservatives would rather the world burn than work in any sort of progressive manner.


Vince1128 t1_j4nkpgp wrote

I don't think humanity can be able to do that ever, there will always be rich people and their interests, money and power over anything else, if that "disaster" is big enough to menace their lifestyle, they'll work to save their butts, that's it, countries will perish without remedy, human nature, it's what it is.


farticustheelder t1_j4nybtq wrote

Consider localization and fair trade.

Localization refers to, at least at first, to energy generation and consumption. No more oil producers and oil importers. Got a country? Buy solar panels and windmills and grow your own. No more parasites like OPEC sucking the lifeblood out of economies.

Next comes fair trade. I like Tesla's idea of making cars where you sell them. That provides good jobs in those markets. It remind me of Henry Ford paying good wages so his employees could afford to buy what they made!

We are starting to see the emergence of a system of distributing jobs fairly across economies. Consider the US IRA bill: make the vehicle in USMCA and get half the credits, use batteries made here and get full credits. The EU is doing the same.

I imagine that in 2-3 the system will look like this: BMW makes cars at its US factory, half the credit; BMW buys made in USMCA batteries and gets 100% credits. Expect for ultra high end stuff that uses 'super special batteries only made in one tiny Bavarian factory' which wouldn't qualify for credits anyway.

So good jobs get spread around. Everyone wins.


hawkwings t1_j4o9958 wrote

If world population was reduced to 2 billion, there would be less concern about immigration and workers might be richer. Cooperation would be easier. I have a concern about religious conflict. Countries would have a place they could deport people to.


goldork t1_j4orbfz wrote

Most of the countries already collaborated and came to an agreement for environmental solutions. There are international agencies that provide guidelines and urged all the nations to sign on international environmental agreements, each with critical issues to address.

Important two you should know are Montreal Protocol to address CFC effects on ozone layer and Kyoto Protocol to address issue of greenhouse gases and climate change.

Currently, we are said to be living with the climate change consequences rather than trying to prevent it years ago. Extreme weather events, rising sea levels, and changes to weather patterns. Last year, for e.g pakistan floods, big river dried up in China and France. Also at US river? With the dino footprints. We dont need these hypothetical scenarios when climate change threaten a country food security and costed billions in damages.

Its important to note that some country are more prone to the effects of climate change. So, when disaster struck, unprecedanted as it'll be, it will not change environmental stance of other country.

Edit: I failed to imply that we are already working together on this critical issue (except north korea) regardless of hypothetical scenarios op mentioned.


mrs0331 t1_j4p2cxn wrote

What it should be:

Famine, poverty, climate crisis, a universal pursuit of happiness

What it will be:



FO_Steven t1_j4pg8jz wrote

Even if aliens invade we'd find a way to fuck that up


enjrolas t1_j4r61kp wrote

From recent memory, the pandemic came closest to that kind of across-the-board threat. Early on in the pandemic I worked in getting equipment into hospitals in three states in the US where I live and later on in 25 other countries. It was amazing how zero-sum the response was to the situation, across every governmental system, large and small
I saw US states poaching ventilators from other states and countries stealing truckloads of ventilators from other countries. I saw countries' customs departments hold up medical equipment for bribes while their citizens died,, private companies hoarding and scalping off supplies and all that resulted in an incredible amount of preventable death and suffering. Across all of this, the response from state to state and country to country was incredibly varied. Everyone had a different opinion about the best course of action, and groups making a coordinated response were only as large as their social ties allowed You could call it tribal or expedient or diverse depending on how you look at it but there was exceedingly little cooperation between tribes even at the smallest level.

It feels a bit callous to call the pandemic a minor emergency, but it's certainly not the sort of threat that threatens the survival of our species, or even a significant percentage of the people on the planet (compared to, say, nuclear war, or an asteroid strike, or a more lethal disease). Still, if you treat this past emergency as an indicator of how our world acts in a crisis, don't expect a lot of cooperation between socially distant groups, cultures, or countries. More like Don't Look Up rather than Independence Day. Maybe a more serious emergency would inspire people to cooperate, but my feeling is, if you can't ride with training wheels, you probably won't do that great on a big kid bike.


irpugboss t1_j4rqp0k wrote

An overwhelming and very clear alien invasion which we very likely would get annihilated in because we're so slow to react and likely way behind in military capabilities to a completely space faring species on conquest.

We'd get neat little merch for a while though, like Earth United stickers and fun commercial slogans with happy music showing our unity and how we will drive back the invaders , for a time lol.

Other than that, global pandemic nope, can't see it, not real enough. Maybe if it was a horrifically visible illness like blood vomit that is transferrable through direct and clear cut contact almost instantly.

Meteor is too localized and anything left standing will just tend to itself then exploit the weakness of others. Other wise it would be too much and just wipe us out to make govs unify.

Global warming would be interesting with sea level rise, may see a haves vs have nots kind of global unification in alot of ways.

Soil spoil globally into famine, would probably cause more division than unification for sure.

AI? At this point our very out of touch leadership won't even see that subversive threat coming if it does lol.

Legit, only direct and clear violence can unite us, maybe and that's likely to protect our power structures moreso than the people. Likely will still have in-faction fighting anyways on tactics, sympathizers, who is in-charge, etc.

Fortunately if all the global governments collapse the aggro that we have as individuals would probably also be why we scrap and cling to living even if we're prone to in-fighting and short-term decision making.


gnagorez OP t1_j4whlbh wrote

Interesting analysis. I think that when we imagine the end of the world or a catastrophic event, we only imagine one option and maybe the most possible is a combination of everything.

For example, in global warming, the sea level rise, and the soil spoiling globally into famine are two options that can happen simultaneously or one after another. And this problem could cause a health problem that could lead us to a new pandemic.

Maybe the only possible scenario where we can unite us is after all the problems, after a population reduction follow it of the disappearing of some government structures.


irpugboss t1_j4x4omq wrote

I would like to imagine it would be possible then but even if so for how long?

I imagine our willingness to fight is biologically driven and cooperation as well but only up until a point until you're needs (even if trivial or imagined) are met.

I guess a non-doomer take for unification would be absolute end to scarcity and all basic needs are met then conflict transforms to something else. It becomes violence or the threat of violence to maintain unity as the clear way to keep ones abundance, so important to maintain the end of scarcity that the act of strengthening unity (and staving off scarcity problems) becomes a form of power/appeal.


chasonreddit t1_j4rxmt2 wrote

> examples in movies or books where nations come together to face a common problem


> I would like to discuss realistic and possible scenarios in the coming decades where X situation leads nations to work together and society changes due to greater globalization and unification.

I don't see one. The only possibility I see is a very global huge disaster. If huge amounts of every nation are not wiped out, the ones not affected will simply use the opportunity. to move in on the others. That applies to every internal and external conflict. I love science fiction too.

Maybe a massive dose of MDMA thrown into every water supply in the world. That's literally the most practical method I can think of.


iamTheOptionator t1_j4oibmn wrote

I honestly think the United States should be divided in two. The current Constitution and three equal but separate branches for one of them. The other half could make up their own laws, banking, social services etc.


pound-town t1_j4oudj3 wrote

It’s not really human nature. If you want to see how humans behave, just look at history. It’s ugly.


Moses_Horwitz t1_j4ow5mq wrote

You only have to look at history and politics: one group will get screwed over by another, the politicians will get rich, and your life will decline into serfdom.


PeakFuckingValue t1_j4qmsp4 wrote

Nothing. We have already confronted the idea we must work together unimpeded to increase chances of any survival of humans into the future. There is no handshake. That's proof and historical repetition. Not possible.


A_Hideous_Beast t1_j4qpgo8 wrote


Even if death is at our doorstep, and we DO work together, there will always be groups, systems, and indiviguals who will exploit the situatiom for their own use on their enemies later on


jimihughes t1_j4rzh9i wrote

Technology of abundance will either bring us together as a one-species, or it will destroy us. This is why UAP is kept in secret rooms by defense contractors. They don't know how to use it without opening the door to limitless power and abundance, which will ruin our scarcity based capitalistic society.

But It Won't Be Long. It can't be kept secret forever, and they're in a panic about it.


Scorpio989 t1_j4s1zow wrote

It's naive to think aliens couldn't remove humans from Earth without humans knowing they are doing it.

It would require massive population depletion and a solvable problem that isn't already solved by the depopulation.


PrincipleSuperb2884 t1_j4sb8tf wrote

Threat of alien invasion comes to mind, not that it's realistic, though.


vrsrex t1_j4tsx3u wrote

By fact US already dictate what to do for EU in many aspects. That’s why we have “issues” with China and Russia (they not share same ideas).

  1. remove Religion, Russia, China and some human rights from equation
  2. occupy all countries
  3. rule them all

YawnTractor_1756 t1_j4w4yuz wrote

There is only one reason governments form: to protect what is inside from what is outside and they are based on the *identity* of 'us' vs 'them' (or in autocracy "me" vs "them"). This is the very basis of state and power in human species.

While there is nothing 'outside' of Earth, there is no "us vs them", and there will be no Earth government, there can only be governments within.

Once there is outside, which could be aliens of course, but more realistic is self-sufficient human colonies on other planets, then there are 2 ways governments form:

  1. Forced by power-wielding authority, a.k.a. World conquered by force
  2. Willful unification based on potential threat of "them" to "us", that would warrant a creation of the government as discussed from the start.

Peet_Pann t1_j4p9j8y wrote

Well... 30% of Americans will support X the other 70% will want to unite to save civilization, the 30% will veto and stop anything from happening til its too late, the other nations will be sitting on their hands waiting on a decision from America.