During the COVID-19 crisis, lockdowns and other social-distancing rules have forced schools worldwide to shut their doors, locking out a peak of 1.6 billion children. Unless the international community acts now, the consequences for this generation – especially its poorest members – will be severe and long-lasting.
After four decades of sacrificing state capacity on the altar of the market, Western countries are facing another large-scale crisis that has revealed the flaws of that approach. The question now is whether the old orthodoxy will finally be replaced.
By forcing much of the world to go online, the COVID-19 crisis has rapidly broadened the global technology debate beyond questions of surveillance and privacy. The digital policies that governments adopt today will increasingly shape how we work, learn, and entertain ourselves – and how we manage future crises.