How do I imagine Europe in 2050?
Environmental problems are intensely discussed nowadays and many people say they wish to see less plastic usage, new forms of renewable energy, less food waste and so on. All of these are targets of certain processes and people often hurry to talk about WHAT they want to see in the future and now about HOW they could actually reach the targets.
I believe European states need to invest more in Research and Development area, so that more research centres are funded and high-technology production increases. This is my vision of Europe in 2050! Of course I want to see that more forms of renewable energy are created, but I am aware that proper equipment to test new technologies is required. Of course I want to see less plastic usage, but I know this means developing other replacing materials, which must be sustainable and affordable! Above all, we need highly-educated people, who are capable to plan and to supervise the technical processes.
According to UNESCO's statistics, USA and China are investing most in research, start-ups and high-tech companies and according to World Bank, these two countries have the most powerful economies, so Europe falls behind. Undoubtedly there is a strong bond between technology( goods such as phones, laptops, house appliances and services like operating systems, mobile networks systems, software systems) and economic growth. I organized a survey, where 30 people were interviewed; they were asked what brand their phone/laptop was, which operating software system they were using and which web browser they were utilizing most often. 85% of the results were Asian or American brands and this means that the money spent for the specific good/service contributed either to USA`s or Asia`s economy, not Europe`s.
Another example, which proves the importance of Research and Development in a country/union, is the following: When the economic crisis hit Europe in 2008, many states made remarkable efforts to maintain or even to increase the public expenditure to this specific domain. More funds for scientific and engineering research meant new technologies(innovations), which led to higher productivity and, consequently, the economy improved. Not only did the governments stimulate the economic growth, but they also encouraged private investors to invest in Research and Development.
My belief is that the European economy has a significant potential to grow larger until 2050, by investing in Research and Development. Having a greater Gross Domestic Product would mean more money for reaching the targets that so many people are talking about: less polluted air, more fully-recyclable materials on the market, new forms of renewable energy in the industry, better education, green-energy cars and so on. Accomplishing all these targets can not happen over night, but 2050 Europe will have the right professionals and the right methods and in conclusion, 2050 Europe will be GREAT!