SCIENCE: Scientists have used a computer to predict exactly when society will collapse.

Sci­en­tists at the Mass­a­chu­setts Insti­tute of Tech­nol­o­gy (MIT) looked at data pat­terns of var­i­ous fac­tors, such as pop­u­la­tion, nat­ur­al resources and ener­gy con­sump­tion, to fig­ure out when we would expe­ri­ence com­plete soci­etal collapse.

The pre­dic­tion made by the researchers was that this soci­etal down­fall would strike around the mid­dle of the 21st cen­tu­ry – 2040, to be exact. Marvellous.

The team’s study, which was pub­lished by the Club of Rome, iden­ti­fied future ‘lim­its to growth’ that would cause indus­tri­al collapse.

How­ev­er, at the time the report was not tak­en too seri­ous­ly and was met with ridicule, reports the Guardian.

But, before you start­ed feel­ing smug — and imple­ment­ing this life­time ISA — in 2009, anoth­er team of researchers con­duct­ed a sim­i­lar study, which was pub­lished by Amer­i­can Sci­en­tist, and con­clud­ed that the results of the mod­el were “almost exact­ly on track some 35 years lat­er in 2008 (with some appro­pri­ate assumptions)…it is impor­tant to rec­og­nize that his pre­dic­tions have not been inval­i­dat­ed and in fact seem quite on the right We know of no mod­el devel­oped by econ­o­mists that is so accu­rate over such a long period.”

More­over, last year Dutch sus­tain­abil­i­ty researcher Gaya Her­ring­ton also con­firmed the some­what bleak pre­dic­tions made in the study.

Speak­ing to the Guardian, Her­ring­ton, who works for multi­na­tion­al accoun­tan­cy firm KPMG, said: “From a research per­spec­tive, I thought a data check of a decades-old mod­el against empir­i­cal obser­va­tions would be an inter­est­ing exercise.”

And his find­ings were about as grim as you can imag­ine, accord­ing to Herrington.

The cur­rent data agrees with pre­dic­tions made in 1972 which pre­dict­ed a worst-case sce­nario of eco­nom­ic growth stop­ping at the end of that decade and col­laps­ing about 10 years later.

But before decid­ing to wrap it all up, Her­ring­ton had some upbeat news.

She told the Guardian: “The main con­clu­sion of my study is that we always have the choice to align our­selves with a sce­nario that does not end in collapse.

“With inno­va­tion in busi­ness, as well as new devel­op­ments from gov­ern­ments and civ­il soci­ety, con­tin­u­ing to update the mod­el pro­vides anoth­er per­spec­tive on the chal­lenges and oppor­tu­ni­ties we have to cre­ate a more sus­tain­able world. .”

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