In what ways does change affect human behavior and how do people
effect change in today's complex environment?
Large changes are happening rapidly. Communications, money and
information quickly reach all parts of the globe. Farmers in the
western states of America are affected by market prices in Asia. Companies
outsource low-tech and high-tech jobs. Foreign
political policy is as important as domestic policy. Technological
interventions become possible in very personal decisions, such
as having children and eating certain foods. Human rights questions
become complicated and confusing.
People have always reacted and adapted to change, so what
is different today? The changes themselves are different: genetic
modifications and new weapons of destruction are just two examples.
Also, scientists have new tools to study the dynamics of change – computer-assisted
modeling and methods such as geographical information systems, that can integrate the work of many different
kinds of scientists. "The new scientific capabilities hold significant promise for making breakthroughs in understanding impacts and human responses to changes of all types."
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