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Crisis of Confidence in the State of the Global Economy

  • Written by Samantha Tonkin
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One third of the  respondents expressed confidence in the state of global coorporation, compared with one-fifth three months ago.The confidence deficit continues worldwide with international experts remaining pessimistic about the state of the global economy and global governance over the next year, according to the results of the World Economic Forum’s second quarterly Global Confidence Index. However, the Index shows that there is higher optimism for global cooperation to address these risks.

Over 1,000 global experts from the public and private sectors were sent the survey for the Global Confidence Index – a joint initiative of the World Economic Forum’s Risk Response Network and Global Agenda Councils. Among the respondents, 70% remain pessimistic about the global economic outlook, the same number as last quarter. Confidence in global governance also remains low this quarter, with a consistent 60% of respondents signaling little trust in political leadership to deal with global risks. One-third of the respondents expressed confidence in the state of global cooperation, compared with one-fifth three months ago. However, concern about a major societal disruption being likely or very likely to occur over the next 12 months has grown from 50% to 60% this quarter.

“Looking at the European situation, it seems clear that optimism in the global economy will return when structural economic challenges are met with credible political solutions,” said Lee Howell, World Economic Forum Managing Director and head of the Forum’s Risk Response Network, which is responsible for publishing the annual Global Risks Report.

The Global Confidence Index is the only research initiative of its kind that targets such a large group of international experts who focus on monitoring key trends, identifying global risks and mapping their interlinkages. Respondents to the quarterly survey are Members of the World Economic Forum’s Network of Global Agenda Councils, which includes policy-makers, business leaders and academics.

The next Global Confidence Index results will be available on 23 January ahead of the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting 2012 in Davos-Klosters, Switzerland.

Samantha Tonkin
Communications, Risk Response Network. World Economic Forum.