August 2020 Trend Report Army

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Expert Forecasts for 2020

Strengthening a nation’s military and warfighters does not necessarily or clearly correspond to a particular position on the development ladder. Certain countries sorely lacking in the most basic living standards have been observed to funnel the majority of their national budget into military spending, given certain circumstances. The same is true for strengthening homeland security and public safety. But in general, nations lower on the development ladder are not in a position to prioritize these two concerns. Meeting the essential needs of their populations— All five of the technology applications these countries have the capacity to acquire— These five, plus two others—rapid bioassays and green manufacturing—could help improve public health as well. The ability to use bioassays to quickly screen for diseases would enable governments to prevent epidemics. It would also increase the probability of correctly prescrib-ing medications, decreasing resistance to antibiotics and other drugs. Reducing the volume of toxic materials in the environment produced by conventional manufacturing processes would improve public health. Strengthening the military and warfighters of the future is often a prominent concern for countries in the scientifically proficient group. For example, as a new EU member, Poland needs to modernize its military for greater compatibility with its new security partners. Russia wants to preserve its former status as a world military power. Strengthening homeland security and public safety can also be a relatively high priority. Russia, for instance, faces considerable internal security problems, such as organized crime and armed opposition in Chechnya. • Wearable computers: Computational devices embedded in clothing or in other wearable items, such as handbags, purses, or jewelry.