Computer Modelling to Influence Public Opinion


Dr. Chris Evans
Science Fact, 1977

‘Anyone who doubts the potential of computer modeling to influence public opinion and action should remember that the whole of the modern surge to ‘ecology’ and the rejection of thow away capitalism arose because of the first large-scale computer simulations – the warning of the Club of Rome that continued profligacy with natural recources would lead to the destruction of modern society’.

The Club of Rome is a global think tank and centre of innovation and initiative.
As a non-profit, non govermental organisation (NGO), it brings together scientists, economists, businessmen, international high civil servants, heads of state and former heads of state from all five continents who are convinced that the future of humankind is not determined once and for all and that each human being can contribute to the improvement of our societies.

The Club of Rome was founded in April 1968 by Aurelio Peccei, an Italian industrialist, and Alexander King, a Scottish scientist.

Hasan Özbekhan, Erich Jantsch and Alexander N. Christakis were responsible for conceptualizing the original prospectus of the Club of Rome titled “The Predicament of Mankind.” This prospectus was founded on a humanistic architecture and the participation of stakeholders in democratic dialogue. When the Club of Rome Executive Committee in the Summer of 1970 opted for a mechanistic and elitist methodology for an extrapolated future, they resigned from their positions.

The Club of Rome raised considerable public attention with its report Limits to Growth, which has sold 30 million copies in more than 30 translations, making it the best selling environmental book in world history. Published in 1972 and presented for the first time at the ISC’s annual Management Symposium in St. Gallen, Switzerland, it predicted that economic growth could not continue indefinitely because of the limited availability of natural resources, particularly oil. The 1973 oil crisis increased public concern about this problem.

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