08.04.2021
‘We may see a further erosion of interconnection’
Editor's Column
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Fyodor A. Lukyanov

Editor-in-Chief of Russia in Global Affairs, Chairman of the Presidium of the Council on Foreign and Defense Policy, and Research Director of the Valdai Discussion Club. Research Professor, Faculty of World Economy and International Affairs, National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow.

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The main effect of technology on the international geopolitical order will derive from a widening gap between the transnational nature of communication and growing resistance to this from nation states.

The world is increasingly fragmented – and made more so by the pandemic. As a result, communication remains the most significant brace of globalization. But tools for communication are primarily provided by private “big tech” companies, which on the one hand are scarcely accountable to the states they work in, and on the other hand, have national roots and can be seen as channels of the outside influence, be it American, Chinese or anybody else’s.

As more sophisticated means of communication are introduced, there will likely be higher suspicion among governments.

The more vulnerable states feel, the tighter control they will try to impose and exercise. As a result, we may see a further erosion of interconnection – something we are already seeing in the economic and political field – and companies may struggle for market opportunities. Combined, this may heighten tensions and prove challenging for the integrity of a globalized world.

More: World Economic Forum