Doug Stanglin, USA TODAY
December 10. 2012 - A report by the National Intelligence Council predicts that the United States will lose its superpower status by 2030, but that no country -- including China -- will be a hegemonic power.
Instead, the report says, power will shift to "networks and coalitions in a multipolar world."
The council, which wrote Global Trends 2030, was established in 1979. It supports the U.S. director of National Intelligence and is the intelligence community's center for long-term strategic analysis.
The council's intelligence officers are drawn from government, academia and the private sector.
"The world of 2030 will be radically transformed from our world today," the report concludes. "By 2030, no country -- whether the U.S., China, or any other large country -- will be a hegemonic power."
The report also finds that the empowerment of individuals and a diffusion of power among states -- and from states -- to informal networks will have a "dramatic impact."
This development, the report finds, will largely reverse the historic rise of the West since 1750, "restoring Asia's weight in the global economy and ushering in a new era of 'democratization' at the international and domestic level."
The report further expects the rapid aging of the world population to continue as well as a growing demand on resources, which might lead to scarcities of food and water.
Among its assessment, the report looks at plausible worst-case and best-case scenarios over the next two decades.
In the former category, it sees the risk of interstate conflict increasing and the U.S. "draws inward and globalization stalls."
In the best-case scenario, China and the U.S. collaborate on a range of issues, leading to a broader global cooperation.