Polycrisis Thought Leaders

World-scale problems and the polycrisis — a term used to describe the interconnected crises we face globally, like climate change, economic inequality, political instability, and pandemics — require interdisciplinary thought leadership. Here are some influential contemporary thought leaders whose work is relevant to these global crises up until my knowledge cutoff in September 2021:

  1. Naomi Klein: An activist and author who addresses issues such as climate change and neoliberal economic policies. Her book “This Changes Everything: Capitalism vs. the Climate” is a notable contribution to the discourse.
  2. Noam Chomsky: A linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, historian, and social critic. He is a major figure in analytic philosophy and one of the founders of the field of cognitive science. He also comments extensively on contemporary global political issues.
  3. Bill Gates: A technologist, business leader, and philanthropist. In recent years, he’s taken a deep interest in climate change and global health crises, expressing these views in his book “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster.”
  4. Elon Musk: A tech entrepreneur who is making significant strides in sustainable energy (Tesla) and space exploration (SpaceX), arguably two of the key arenas for addressing world-scale problems.
  5. Yuval Noah Harari: An historian and author of “Sapiens,” “Homo Deus,” and “21 Lessons for the 21st Century,” Harari explores large-scale, macro-historical forces and their impact.
  6. Greta Thunberg: A young Swedish environmental activist who’s galvanized global attention around climate change and is advocating for radical action.
  7. Vandana Shiva: An Indian scholar, environmental activist, food sovereignty advocate, and anti-globalization author. She is influential in the global environmental movement.
  8. Amartya Sen: An economist and philosopher, Sen’s work on welfare economics, poverty, and social justice offers insightful perspectives on economic crises and inequality.
  9. Joseph Stiglitz: A Nobel laureate in economics, he writes extensively on income inequality, wealth distribution, and the pitfalls of global capitalism.
  10. Kate Raworth: An economist known for her work on ‘Doughnut Economics’, a visual framework for sustainable development – shaped like a doughnut or lifebelt.
  11. Paul Hawken: An environmentalist, entrepreneur, author, and activist known for his work on sustainability and changing the relationship between business and the environment.
  12. Thomas Piketty: A French economist whose work focuses on wealth and income inequality. His book “Capital in the 21st Century” has been influential in economic policy discussions around the world.
  13. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala: An economist and the first woman and first African Director-General of the World Trade Organization (WTO). She has a rich experience in tackling economic inequality and promoting sustainable development.
  14. Jeffrey Sachs: An economist and director of The Earth Institute, where he has championed sustainable development and the fight against poverty.
  15. Mohamed El-Erian: An economist who focuses on macroeconomic trends, monetary policy, and financial stability, and their global impacts.