In the media

Ahead of the Munich Security Conference 2024, Tobias Bunde raises the alarm about zero-sum thinking in the international community

On Project Syndicate and Der Standard, Senior Researcher Tobias Bunde outlines the growing dissatisfaction with the global order and warns of the “lose-lose world” this dissatisfaction could bring.

Based on the introduction of the Munich Security Report 2024, Dr Tobias Bunde, a Senior Researcher at the Hertie School and Director of Research and Policy at the Munich Security Conference, has published a commentary in Project Syndicate together with Sophie Eisentraut (Munich Security Conference). A German-language version of the commentary was published in Der Standard.

In the article, Bunde and Eisentraut discuss the dysfunction and dissatisfaction that increasingly plague efforts at global cooperation. They argue that many key actors are increasingly concerned about their slice of the proverbial pie and the question of who will win more. As the authors warn, prioritising relative payoffs may well spur lose-lose dynamics. Without new partnerships and reform aimed toward mutual benefit and shared gains, this worldview could become a dangerous self-fulfilling prophecy, leading toward a world order in which “every slice [of the pie] is destined to shrink – and countries will end up competing over who loses less”.

Read the commentary in Project Syndicate here and the Munich Security Report 2024 here. The German-language commentary in Der Standard can be read here

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More about the expert

  • Tobias Bunde, Senior Researcher, Centre for International Security