The Case for Optimism

From technology to equality, five ways the world is getting better all the time

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Illustration by Oliver Munday for TIME

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My last example of why I'm optimistic concerns one of my favorite partnerships, the Hult International Business School and its annual Hult Global Case Challenge. Each year the school joins with leading NGOs to pose a series of real global social challenges, and teams of four or five university students from around the world compete to find the best solution. The NGO partners then receive seed funding for implementing the winning ideas through a $1 million cash grant.

One of the winners this year was from the Abu Dhabi campus of New York University, and the team was four students: one from India, one from Pakistan, one from China and one from Taiwan. When they came onstage to receive their award and pose for a picture, I asked them, "Are you sure you guys want this in the local paper?" And they said, in various ways, "We are so over this." The differences between India and Pakistan over Kashmir are real, as are the tensions between China and Taiwan, but these students are living 10 years from now. They have something to look forward to, and they set a wonderful example for the rest of us to follow.

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