Governance in Revolution Generation

12/31/2012 06:45 pm ET | Updated Mar 02, 2013

It was just another morning for me. A cup of tea in one hand, a newspaper in another. And it was just another newspaper carrying the same old stories -- stories of crime in the city, politicians indulging in allegations and counter-allegations, accounts of chronic governance failure and the poor not getting justice, reports of corruption in the government offices and the like. Somehow I felt I had enough -- just another day feeling sad about lack of good governance in my country, India. I put the newspaper down and started to busy myself in the preparations for my grandfather's 90th birthday celebrations!

Being a happy-go-lucky person, my grandfather wanted to gather together close friends and family to share some of his life experiences. To participate in the celebrations, our neighbors also came over with their 6-year-old kid. Since the kid is addicted to his father's iPad, it was his necessary accompaniment. Off and on, he kept playing games on the iPad. Even my grandfather got interested and started to ask the kid what was keeping him occupied on the screen. And thus the kid started explaining to my grandfather how to operate an iPad. It was quite amusing to see the 6-year-old teaching the 90-year-old how to run the digital device! And thus, what started as a session where the 90-year-old was sharing his life-experiences ended up in a 6-year-old sharing the insights of a technological innovation!

There is a popular belief that the world has not progressed as much in last 500 years as it has developed in last 50. And, the world has not changed as much in last 50 years, as it has -- in last 5 years!

We are indeed living in the "Age of Revolution" and this revolution is taking place all around us. We don't realize the importance of it, just because we are a part of it! Many years later, our forthcoming generations will look back at these years in history and talk about how the world completely turned around during this "revolution." And this very upheaval refers to the strides in communication technology that have been made in the recent years.

There is no denying that this revolution has fundamentally changed the way the human civilization functions: the way we think, the way we express ourselves, the way we connect, the way we do business and also the way we make decisions. Some of our preconceived ideas are undergoing massive change -- even the concepts of "government" and "governance" cannot remain apart from these radical changes.

The young population today is much more aware and much more technologically equipped than ever before. Unfortunately in my country, just like in many other parts of the world, large sections of this young population under the age of 30 feel completely disconnected from the way public systems function, and their energy and passion are often used merely for political gains for the established interests.

One cannot turn a blind eye to the fundamental discrepancies that are emerging. When we need more and more young blood in our politics, the politicians world over try to cling to old styles of personality politics, full of vested interests and thriving nepotism. Amidst the aggressive statements and art of misguiding the citizens through marketing gimmicks, sadly, there remains a desperate need for creating a politics most youngsters can connect with.

As the young liberals march ahead in different spheres of life and conquer the frontiers of knowledge, it is unfortunate that bright minds feel left out by those with archaic ideas on how politics of our countries should be run.

Miniscule attempts are being made to engage the young educated voters, and there is little or no effort by the political candidates to build their credibility amongst the youth across many continents.

The opaque style of decision making behind closed doors needs to become a thing of history, as the awakened "revolution" generation demands more answers, more openness -- more accountability! No longer can our leaders try to keep citizens in the dark as the breeze of transparency and openness alter the very thinking patterns of individuals.

Our public systems and public institutions must respond to these changing times and overhaul the old ways. The youth, with the power of technology and with open access to information from throughout the world, is getting ready to debate policies, to demand equality and to engage in creating flourishing democracies. It is the duty and responsibility of the people in power to see to it that public systems encourage the entry of bright youngsters, and that their talents are channeled in the direction of creating better societies. Indeed, it is only when the 90-year-olds start appreciating the power of a 6-year-old with an iPad in his hand that the tables will start to turn!

This post is part of a series produced by The Huffington Post and The World Economic Forum in recognition of the latter's Global Shapers initiative. The Global Shapers Community is a worldwide network of city-based hubs developed and led by young entrepreneurs, activists, academics, innovators, disruptors and thought leaders. Aged between 20 and 30, they are exceptional in their achievements and drive to make a positive contribution to their communities. Follow the Global Shapers on Twitter at @globalshapers or nominate a Global Shaper at www.globalshapers.org/apply.