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Can a global perspective make us “future-proof”?

I was intrigued to come across an article about how to create “Future-proof URLs”, given the state of the world on this fine July day. As Jon Stewart put it last night (I’m fortunate in having a son to relay important lines, since I don’t stay up till 11), these days you turn on your computer and find out World War III has started.

It’s a grim outlook, and that’s why I noticed the idea of “future proofing.” URLs need to be coded in a certain way to make them future proof, and that’s quite easy. But what can we do to future-proof our countries? I’ve been in DC, where at least some people understand that national security means more than military might, but includes energy security, environmental security, and social security, too.

What can a publisher do? As a U.S.-based publisher, perhaps the single most important thing we can do is to help Americans better understand the world they live in. This means providing material that offers new points of view and that helps students, in particular, understand global perspectives. It’s thrilling to be close to publication of a landmark work, the first general resource to explore the global role and image of the United States, from its founding to the present. This work is called Global Perspectives on the United States and two of the three volumes will be published in November. It includes nation-by-nation surveys written by experts, timelines, biographies, and much more.

This work will provide essential information that can help us make our nation, and the world at large, a bit more “future-proof.” And if you haven’t added your two cents’ worth to, please do join the conversation and tell us what you love, or hate, about the United States.

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