The journal Acta Europeana Systemica (AES) calls for contributions. Under the title Unlock Consciences: Rethinking the World after the Pandemic, the call states:
The Covid-19 pandemic calls the functioning of our eco-social systems into question in all their aspects (management of social relations, economy, hospital networks, food supply, work, parenthood, schooling, media, digital tools, information, tourism, etc.).
While we are all overwhelmed by the speed and scale of the phenomenon, we experience it differently: those who were worried about the trend towards the virtualization of our social relations are living a waking nightmare, those who valued a slow attitude towards degrowth are enjoying the calm, those who hoped that everything was under control are looking for those responsible.
Despite the gradual implementation of structured processes of deconfinement in several countries, the effects of this situation are still difficult to approach in terms of the physical and mental health of citizens, but also from the social, political and economic points of view.
Initially, taking assertive measures to deal with the current pandemic crisis seems reassuring. But potential abuses exist, such as the re-establishment of a new hygienism, of which we know from history the perverse effects, the occupation of the entire media space to the point of concealing all other information, the use of the pandemic as a pretext to diminish individual freedoms and to set aside the questions raised in particular by the disastrous state of our ecumene or by the exacerbation of social inequalities.
Secondly, at a time when the intensity of the crisis seems to be diminishing, would we not try to elucidate its underlying logic, to reveal our capacities for long-term resilience, to propose creative solutions to bring about a different world? This speculative work is less reassuring and requires a great deal of imagination since it is based on a question that is simple to state, but to which it is difficult if not impossible to give a definitive answer: would this pandemic situation not offer us the opportunity to rethink the world?
This question is just one more reformulation of other inevitable questions that humanity is cowardly reluctant to answer (imminent ecological crash, technological indifference, absurdity of economic models…).
In this context of widespread uncertainty, the concepts, tools and methods of systemic modelling could help us take advantage of this unprecedented situation to encourage us to unlock our consciences. They would enable us to avoid the tempting choice of the easy way out to mobilize our consciences in the service of questions that are disturbing.
Let us never forget our collective capacity to rethink the world!
The journal is published by the Union Européenne de Systémique.