Introduction: The Coronavirus Guides

Here at Zeihan on Geopolitics, our job is to help people make sense of the world. We have done so by blending the studies of military affairs, economics, culture, demographics, energy and tech. About two years ago we realized the “end of the Order” theme that undergirds all our work was starting to become very present. (For those of you not familiar with our work, the short version is the era of global connection – of globalization, if you will – is ending).

To prepare for the next era, we have steadily expanded our expertise into the six dominant economic sectors that shape the human condition: agriculture, transport, industrial commodities, manufacturing and finance. In fact, as of February, our next big project was to produce a book which would describe in detail how these six sectors will convulse and transform in the years to come in a world without global structures.

Coronavirus has, to put it mildly, forced us to adjust a few things.

First, while the pace of humanity’s shift from the Order to the coming Disorder has been accelerating in recent years, coronavirus has both altered the context and launched it to light-speed. This series of newsletters is designed to give readers an idea of the depth and permanence of the changes. And where players do have some agency, to provide a bit of insight into the movers’ goals, capabilities and limitations.

Second, you will notice that some pieces have sections reminiscent of others. This is in part intentional. We anticipate many coronavirus-tinged newsletters in the next several weeks. Our goal is to enable readers to pick and choose the digestible bits relevant to them. But this is also in part the nature of the beast. If we were to assemble this into a single, coherent, non-repetitive narrative we’d need to first be at least most of the way through the crisis. That’d really not help anyone understand where we are today, what’s coming tomorrow, and what they might consider doing to prepare for the future. So we are opting for a degree of repetition rather than a treatise for the ages.

Third, this is, to be blunt, a bit of an advertisement. The bulk of the research for the new book has already been done, and most of our time this past two weeks has been to apply our findings to our newly changed circumstances. We are ready to go. In addition, most of our income comes from putting Peter on a passenger jet to go and interact with large groups of people. That business model requires…modification. Our current business lines fall into three buckets:

  • large-scale Zoom conferences on the topic of the day,
  • custom teleconferences in which clients submit their specific questions for in-depth discussion,
  • full videoconferences for the audience of the client’s choice.

For information on rates and bookings, please contact as at zeihan.com/consulting/

And now, on with the series.

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