Examples of contemporary issues include economic crises, income inequality and climate change. These problems affect the entire world and have become more pronounced since the beginning of the 21st century.
Financial crises across the world have had a significant impact on the global economy. The “Great Recession” of the late 2000s wreaked havoc on the finances of many countries and contributed to massive unemployment rates. While many economies have made steps toward recovery, the World Economic Forum reported in 2014 that fiscal crises in key economies are still a significant risk. Many developed economies still struggle, while emerging countries have seen credit increases, which could lead to further financial crises.
Along with the global financial crisis, income inequality has become a more prominent issue since the start of the 21st century. The historically stable middle class was particularly affected by the Great Recession, even in highly developed countries. This lapse in economic stability put greater attention on the financial disparity between the wealthy elite and the rest of society, particularly in the United States, which has seen income inequality grow steadily since the 1970s.
Climate change poses various threats to global stability, including water shortages, crop failures and hazardous weather. While many countries have taken steps to combat climate change, greenhouse gas emissions are still a major problem, particularly in developing countries.