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Mapping Wild Cards

Inspired by: corporate press » Discovery of an alien civilization

version: 13 / updated: 2013-01-29
id: #1961 / version id: #1961
mode: VIEW

Originally submitted by: Maïder Cottard
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Last changed by: Maïder Cottard
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Source of inspiration

Corporate Press (e.g. AFP, BBC, CNN)

The source of the Wild Card is

http://www.lefigaro.fr/sciences/2011/03/09/01008-20110309ARTFIG00496-de-pretendues-traces-de-vie-extraterrestre-font-polemique.php http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2199586/Alien-life-40-years-says-royal-astronomer.html http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/10/18/us-science-newplanet-aliens-idUSBRE89H16H20121018

Uploaded reports, images or pictures related to the Wild Card

File name File type File size
extraterrestre-gris.jpg image 205864 open


(max. 9 words)

Discovery of an alien civilization


(approx. 150 words)
Please describe the Wild Card (approx. 150 words)
Alien life is a recurrent question in our society, and many believe that it exists. Discovering it might happen soon as we make progress in science and astro-physicists may be able to view images of the distant planets outside of the solar system because of technological advancements.


new life, alien, planet, science, discovery


Closest timeframe for at least 50% likelihood
Please use one of the following options:

Features of life if the wild card manifests

Feature 1: business models and industrial environment
new markets would emerge, collaboration could be made.
Feature 2: education and research environment
we would probably learn about the alien life in school so that the relations between the two species would be peaceful.
Feature 3: consumers, markets and lifestyles
As people are attracted by exploring and discovering new things and ways of life, maybe new products would be commercialized and there would be new way of organizing work society and so on... But that will depend on the level of advancement of the new civilization because history has proven when human meet something weaker or something they consider less worthy, they tend to opress it, dominate it or worst destroy it.
Feature 4: technology and infrastructure
new resources and new technologies could be used.
Feature 5: politics and global affairs
Keeping good relationships between leaders of the two species. Trading with the new civilization would be possible too.
Feature 6: health and quality of life
It will depend of the people we meet. If the relationship is peaceful and positive, maybe the standard living of human being will get better
Feature 7: security and defence
Might lead nations to want to protect themselves when facing the unknown.

Type of event

Unplanned consequence of events/trends/situations (e.g. financial crisis, accidental breakthrough)

Type of emergence

please select (if any) describe related trend or situation
A new development/situation
(e.g. a Romani state is established in central Europe; A message from an alien civilisation existing on a distant planet is received and understood, etc.
New type of life is detected in the space

Type of systems affected

Human-built Systems - E.g. organisations, processes, technologies, etc.




please specify:
please select
Level 1: important for a particular country United States, maybe they won't be the most powerful anymore so their hegemonic position would be affected.
Level 4: important for the whole world Every country would be concerned because the order of the world would change. And potentially, every country can benefit or not from this discovery

Latent phase

Obstacles for early indentification

political filters (party or ideological interests)

Manifestation phase

Type of manifestation

In a probably enclosed way (e.g. geographically, sectorally)

Aftermath phase

Important implications
Collapse of a system
Emergence of a new system (e.g. new technologies, new paradigms)
Transformation of a system (e.g. new applications, change in stakeholders relations/influence)


There could be many changes in society discovering a new civilization. Those could be small change or drastic ones. It will depend on the degree of development of that new society . that would be the case if is more developped, as we know human tend to oppress, dominate, misconsider or even destroy whatever is supposed to be weaker or less worthy. But in the case, aliens are unfriendly and more powerful, that would be the end of our society.

Key drivers or triggers

Provide up to 2 possible drivers or triggers of HIGH importance. Click on HELP to see examples:
please describe
Driver / Trigger 1
please describe
Driver / Trigger 2
Social other organizations
Technological/Scientific more advanced technology
Economic new products and raw materials other sources of inspiration
Environmental less polluting ways of producting
Political other political systems new power ranking among the countries
Values/Ethical/Cultural assimilation of elements of the new culture affirmation or reject of our identity

Potential impacts (risks & opportunities)

Timeframe options
Risks Opportunities
(within 1 year after the Wild Card manifests)
war fear racism discovery of new surrounding and opportunities interbreeding
short term
(1 to 5 years after the Wild Card manifests)
economical collapse or recession because of a new order where humans are not comfortable with growth boosted thanks to economical changes interbreeding
medium term
(5 to 10 years after the Wild Card manifests)
relationship really tensed or confictual war positives changes in every sphere of live
long term
(more than 10 years after the Wild Card manifests)
two cultures don t match war -people living together -the new worl integrated as an other continent

Potential stakeholders' actions

it occurs
it occurs
Policy actors (at the international, European and national levels) policy actors from both sides meet to organize the meeting of the two civilization they sign peace and economical treaties
Business actors (incl. SMEs) Benchmarking of the alien sides to take business opportunities Modify their offer to adapt to new markets
Academic/Research sector Spend a lot of time and resources to obtain accurate information work with alien scientist
Non-for-profit organisations (e.g. NGOs, political parties, social movements, voluntary associations) prepare the population to welcome different people Make sure taking different actions that everybody feels integrated, comfortable about the new situation
Media Try to give positive messages not to afraid populations Inform people as much as posible
General public Be open minded and kindly Try to consider everybody the same way and apply the same rules and rights to everybody

Relevance for Grand Challenges

where? please justify:
particularly relevant Europe world
Behavioural change When a new actor appears, people have to modify many things, including their behavior to communicate and get along
Coexistence and conflicts The arrival of a new actor can be the source of peace as war
Crime and terrorism
Diseases, health and well-being We saw that coming to Latin America, Cortes brought many deseases which are responsible to a certain extend, of the collapse of the precolombian civilization for instance. That could be the same.
Education dynamics Discovering new things implies to transmit that to the youth
Governance and trust in democracy Confronted to aliens we could be more critical about our own system
Social exclusion & poverty
Social cohesion and diversity The question of diversity would be compulsory, more than ever as we would have to accept a new form of living
Energy security/dynamics
Economic prosperity/dynamics Thanks to the positive or negative relations, economy would be affected
Globalization vs. localization
Innovation dynamics If we can benefits from new technology, it will foster innovation
Urban and rural dynamics
Sustainability and climate change

Relevance for thematic research areas

please justify:
particularly relevant
ICT - Information & communication technologies
Nanosciences, nanotech, materials & new prod. tech.
Social Sciences and Humanities

Pan-European strategies potentially helping to deal with the wild card

please justify:
particularly relevant
Developing and funding world-class research infrastructures

Relevance for future R&D and STI policies

Note: RTD = research and technology development; STI = science, technology and innovation
If aliens have their own technology and if it developped, research could improve a lot.