FEAR and "The great reset": Analysis of the World Economic Forum's post-COVID agenda videos and the adverse reactions to them


This article compares the ideological positions found in the visions of the future proposed by the World Economic Forum (WEF) in “The Great Reset” campaign and in the internet users’ reaction to it. In this YouTube campaign, the WEF presents what it understands the “new normal” should be –understood as the new social, economic, and political relations after the COVID-19 pandemic.

The YouTube users’ comments reject the agenda and express different grounds for such an attitude. This study identifies the main ideas and ideologies within the comments and in the presentation of the WEF’s campaign using the psychoanalytical political theory. The results reveal that the agenda and reactions to it are motivated by the exacerbated state of inequality and suffering caused by the current pandemic. While “The Great Reset” attempts to save capitalism by integrating human values, the comments contain populist and conspiratorial ideas. Although they rely on different epistemological grounds, the analysis reveals that both share a common understanding of a society that separates the populace against the ruling elites, who have become wealthier during the pandemic.