It is also why my expectation of growing economic and social disruptions over the next few decades signals bad news for our collective ability to respond well to the longer term threats our society faces. Human reactions to increasing perceptions of threat constitute a complex series of feedback cycles, both positive and negative, rendering linear trends hyperbolic. This is why specific forecasting has such a bad track record and why "bumpy" is about the level of specificity I'm willing to commit myself to in describing the coming decades.
Some human reactions make crises worse than they need to be. Food shortages can lead to hoarding behaviour that exacerbates the problem for those with least access to food. First order problems (e.g. hunger) can lead to second order problems (e.g. riots) that drain resources from addressing the primary problem.
Other human reactions can mitigate the worst of crises. Co-operation, trust and sharing can spread the burden of a situation upon more shoulders, making it lighter for everyone. Sudden shocks to the status quo can sometimes awaken the moral imagination to envisage a new way of life (or the renewal of old ways).
Which kind of feedback is likely to dominate? It is very difficult to know, and may well differ from place to place. How is it possible to create the conditions now under which communities of trust and co-operation can flourish during times of crisis? How can such communities maintain an openness to outsiders and strangers? And what kinds of communities of trust are able to face immediate challenges without discounting the future?