[INTERVIEW] - What are the impacts of the current crisis on a broken generation?


Interview of the authors of the Book “Children of deconstruction. Portrait of a youth in rupture(ed. Marie B., 2019).


What is for you, the impact of the Coronavirus crisis on the Western economic and civilizational model?

The Coronavirus is a reflection of globalization. 

This economy of the transport of goods, of the incessant human flows between countries and civilizations has allowed a major economic boom over the last fifty years. 

Today gives it to change. The prophecies of Billes Gates on the possibility of a heavy epidemic for which the world was not prepared were not taken seriously. In this system where efficiency and rationality are the watchwords, the world discovers that the doctors are forced to make choices in the patients, the developed countries are astonished that one can eat bats, that animals can be carriers of serious diseases. To the ecological phenomenon that did not seem sufficient to induce a radical change, the threat of generalized contagion hampered the global economic development.

The coronavirus is anxiety-provoking, because it is not confined to certain regions of the world, it is not a virus that money can cure or which is confined to the countries of the South. The Coronavirus depends on individual behavior, on the ability of men to spare others risks. Two models are opposed between Chinese authoritarianism, which seems to have been very effective (although some doubts hover over the reality of the figures announced by the government of Xi Jinping) and a rather late call for individual responsibility for Western models. . For the West, this crisis questions the capacity of peoples to self-discipline and for States to resolve the complex equation between public freedoms and efficiency. 

Undoubtedly, the health crisis we are going through must push us to reconsider the relationship of nations to globalization as well as the sustainability of an economic model that ignores environmental challenges. 


“The startup nation is a promise”: how can we ensure that this promise is kept and made virtuous?

The startup is the step that is supposed to precede a meteoric success. 

It is important to see the startup, not as a promise, but a prerequisite, a hope for strong companies, deeply innovative and at the service of well-being. The start-up nation is not only a place where a large number of companies are concentrated, fortunately, but an ecosystem in which the State, in all its forms, is committed, financially or not. 

This startup nation is not a homogeneous block; Israel, which has long been called that way, or Silicon Valley do not have the same identity and it would be a mistake to hope to simply replicate the methods elsewhere so that our startups come out of the ground. 

France, through its leaders, must give innovative companies a proactive and committed leadership. The courage to choose between bold innovations, beneficial to all, technological or medical for example and innovations that we humorously call "Supermarket" who are there to sell products with touted marketing, stems from a strong political commitment. 

Ecology, advanced technology, health and territories seem to us to be the main axes of this major investment policy for create innovation for the benefit of all

In your opinion, how are we going to have to rethink innovation after the current situation (Techforgood, Societal innovation, etc.)?

Unquestionably teleworking which has become an obligation for a very large number of companies will be able to become more meaningful in the life of companies. 

Ecologically, this is a very strong opportunity reduce travel and thus greenhouse gases. However, the French are realizing it, teleworking is not rosy, the hours have become blurry, this place of disconnection that is the home has become a place of professional activity with all the physical and psychological constraints that that. pose and the unequal dimension between workers according to the quality of their place of life. 

It's a bit early to predict an innovation revolution linked to the Coronavirus, but the commitment to ecology which has taken an increasingly large part in the public sphere over the past five years is most important. Hopes are in the land, science and education. Together, these are the elements that have always made our country beat, from Rousseau to Marie Curie, from Jaurès to André Citroën. It is these assets and these choices that will offer France the means to create a future that is neither in isolation nor in follow-up.

France's hope of become the great eco-innovative nation is not in vain, our territory is full of potential for green energies and this commitment that we call for in the book for an economy committed to the service of men must go through the whole of France, that is to say the its entire territory and its entire population.

How would you describe Generation Y and Z who are dealing with the advent of AI and social media?

There is a generational gap between generation Z (under 20) and his ancestors and Generation Y who are building like a bridge (between 20 and 30 years old) having both known the world before the Internet and having grown up with its development. 

The three stages that make up the life of any individual and that we wanted to analyze in the book are "Love me", "make me", "fight me". These stages are not necessarily linear and vary from one individual to another, however when it comes to analyzing the underlying trends of our generation, this division is evident to us. These stages are going to be profoundly different for the generations to come and the break with the past generations much stronger. 

Where generations were torn apart over ideas, over authors, over thoughts of liberty or authority, of religion or atheism, the generation which precedes and the one which follows are threatened not with heartbreak, but with 'a silence. The means of communication are different, the social link is reinvented by new tools, the relationship to time is no longer the same; these are two worlds that struggle to communicate.

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