Viewpoint: Why 2021 Can and Should Be the Year for Breakthrough Collaboration
Spiralling COVID-19 infections and deaths, economic turmoil and political instability have continued unabated into 2021, further rattling our economies and societies. Last year has left us in no doubt that global systems, already under strain at the start of the pandemic, are broken. Failing to meet the SDGs, widening inequality and climate breakdown are just some of the symptoms of our crisis-stricken world.
But something else has been thrown into sharp relief in the past year: a strong thread of human resilience, cooperation and solidarity has characterized the emergent response to these challenges. People and organizations everywhere have stepped up during the COVID-19 crisis, joining forces and protecting lives and livelihoods – from the unparalleled global scientific collaboration to develop a vaccine; to innovative networks (including the World Economic Forum’s COVID Action Platform) that have emerged to unlock the capital needed to respond to the crisis, provide last-mile healthcare or protect the jobs of vulnerable communities. These cross-regional and, perhaps more importantly, grassroots initiatives have redefined what true collaboration looks like.