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What's Coming In 2019? Global Thinkers Make Big, Bold Predictions

What will the next year bring? We asked experts for their forecasts on humanitarian aid, the refugee crisis, global health and other topics.
Demonstrators ransacked this Ebola transit center in Beni in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where the struggle to control the disease — and the protests it has sparked — will be part of the global health landscape in 2019. Source: Alexis Huguet

At the beginning of 2018, we made predictions about what the year in global health and development might look like in the countries we cover.

The pundits we interviewed forecast that 2018 would bring a decline in the number of health workers around the world, inspire more humanitarians to share their #MeToo stories and see more conflict that would drive the world's humanitarian crises.

Our predictors didn't do too badly. The Lancet's latest Global Burden of Disease study noted: "The global shortage and unequal distribution of health workers requires urgent attention." In October, international charities gathered in London to try to tackle sexual harassment in the aid sector. And a 2018 report from UNOCHA found that "conflict remains the main driver of humanitarian needs."

So what should we expect in 2019? We reached out to pundits in global health and development and they came up with nine bold predictions.

1. Positive social change will be contagious in Africa.

Over the past. The country welcomed a new reformist prime minister, who forged peace with former enemy Eritrea and freed thousands of political prisoners.

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