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CONCEPTUAL FRAMEWORKS 
(CRISIS --- RESPONSE --- TRANSITION)

* Disclaimer:

All frameworks are based on the understanding gathered by Mr. Sudhir Shetty  from authoritative published literatures on these diverse  subjects but simplified here only for the sake of  presenting the complex ideas to the audience on our website. This is a work in progress and we invite other scholars to help us  improve these frameworks  to further the objectives of GCR. Very soon these frameworks will be accompanied by detailed blogs & references justifying the rationale behind each of them.  In the meantime  the  readers are requested to do their own due diligence before accepting  claims or arguments they come across on our platform. 

I.SNAPSHOT C-R-T FRAMEWORKS 

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II.GLOBAL CRISIS DEFINED (GCD)

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  • A Global Catastrophic Risks(GCR) is a hypothetical future event that could damage human well-being on a global scale, even endangering or destroying modern civilization. An event that could cause human extinction or permanently and drastically curtail humanity's potential is known as an existential risk.

 

  • GCRs could be the result of Natural as well as Anthropogenic causes. They  are both capable of causing  the Twin Risks to life on Earth (especially to Humanity )

      1. Societal Collapse (Irreversible)

      2. Mass Extinction 

 

  • Thus, the GCD framework has limited the definition of Global Crisis (GC) to only certain category of Global Catastrophic Risks (GCRs) resulting from anthropogenic causes leading to Collapse & Mass Extinction. 

  • GC is primarily concerned with Anthropogenic GCRs, namely:

a. Overshoot : Sink (Pollution) & Source (Scarcity) related Risks 
b. Complexity : High Complexity & Low Resilient Critical Infrastructures Risks 
c.Tech-Risks : Dual-Use run-away technologies risk multipliers

III.A.GLOBAL  CRISIS (GC) FRAMEWORK

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The Global Crisis (GC) is the conceptual framework identifies

GROWTH-ISM(Driven by Neo-liberal Capitalism, Linear & Extractive Economy & the Myth of absolute “De-coupling”)   (as the Key Driver)

HUMAN & MATERIAL CENTRED -      (‘Good-Life’ Goals guiding individual actions)   (as the Root Cause )

that are promotes human systems  capable of triggering events leading to

Twin Existential Risks: 

  • Societal Collapse: The Loss of Societal Complexity characterized by radical global economic contraction on account disruption of Critical Infrastructures upholding the hyper-connected Modern Techno Industrial (MTI) society.  

  • Biospheric  Collapse: The Biosphere or productive eco-systems that sustains all life on earth are completely disrupted and dysfunctional bringing almost all life on Earth to a stand still.

That can ultimately lead to the 
Twin Consequences:

  • End of this Civilization (Unsustainable MTI Society) may be paving the way for alternative  local futures 

  • Mass Extinction i.e. Colossal Die-offs & Die-backs 
     

 

III. B. HUMANITY’S SUSTAINABILITY CHALLENGE 

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The Sustainability Challenge  framework is an extremely simplified visual representation of the most challenging predicament & problem facing humanity: 

If at all humanity somehow manages to muster the necessary global political will (to over the predicament) by agreeing to implement the Strong Sustainability Measures i.e. Controlled & Voluntary Collapse then:

 

“How do we radically reduce Global Throughput  (TP) (i.e. material & energy footprint of humanity) and still sustain current  population levels?“


(Population at current size assuming no uncontrolled collapse & die-offs take place) 
 

III. C. LIMITS TO GROWTH & OVERSHOOT

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Any reference to GDP growth actually describes the exponential rise of the five processes of global economy namely: 
Extraction
Production
Distribution
Consumption
Excretion 

which cumulatively (in material & energy terms) can also refer to economic throughput (TP)

 

When 
TP > the replenishment rate of Renewable Resources (RR) or the Bio-capacity
TP > the depletion rate of the Non-renewable Resources (NRR)  & 
TP > the absorption rate of the  Ecosystems (or assimilation capacity)
then it leads to OVERSHOOT OR BIOSPHERIC COLLAPSE

 

To avoid Overshoot the TP of the global economy must always within the ‘safe limits’ (sustainability limits) as shown in graph (B) 
 

IV. GLOBAL CRISIS RESPONSE (GCR) FRAMEWORK

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  • The GCR Framework acknowledges that Global Crisis (GC) is not just a problem confronting humanity but it represents more like a Predicament (a Moral Choice). The potential global responses to this predicament are: 

  1. Business as Usual (BAU) ----- Current Global Consensus & Strategy

  2. Weak Sustainability (WS) measures   ----  Gradualists & Techno-fixes

  3. Strong Sustainability (SS) measures ---- Radicalists

  •  Each of these choices will lead humanity towards a trajectory ranging from 

  1. Near term Societal Collapse – Mass Extinction

  2. Delayed Collapse & Mass Extinction 

  3. Controlled Collapse, Deep Adaptations, Alternative local Futures

  • GCR framework helps ordinary citizens and activists alike to differentiate, evaluate the utility of solutions, policy alternatives and measures  in light of their potential to avert the ultimate existential risks to humanity. 
     

 

V.A. PARADIGM SHIFT (PS) FRAMEWORK  

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  • The GC and the GCR framework have helped us understand with a simplified representation of the complex and pervasive PROBLEM (Existential Risks) and its  SOLUTION (Strong Sustainability Measures) 

  • Our Civilization is witnessing a tectonic shift (un-natural) from a long comfortable 11000 year period (HOLOCENE : Abundance & Climate Stability) that allowed exponential growth in Human Population & Consumption (Throughput) towards  a new phase (ANTHROPOCENE-Scarcity & Climate Disruptions)

  • The central thesis behind PARADIGM SHIFT (PS) framework is that Modern Techno Industrial (MTI) society  relies heavily on Complex, low resilient, Centralized critical infrastructures/ key-stone hubs. 

  • The PS framework triggered aspires to prefigure a transition road-map that develops new human systems that rely on infrastructure more adapted to Anthropocene-Scarcity conditions, hence Less Complex, more decentralized and resilient. 
     

 

V. B.  GCR AS A CATALYST (THEORY OF CHANGE)

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