Jared Diamond, scientist and author of "Guns, Germs, and Steel," talked to Innovation Hub about the factors that contribute to the success — or failure — of civilizations, from the environment to health to political structures.

Young people, he believes, will have to confront issues that have been insufficiently addressed by world governments — particularly climate change.

"The course that we're on now is one that if we didn't straighten our course would leave us in a messed up world by 2050 — probably before. Perhaps my New Guinea friends will still be making stone axes, but you and I, or our equivalents, will not be having a conversation."