which nation will lead, embrace and 'own' the next generation of synthetic modules, systems in a variety of fields ? the usa, but they'll have to get back in the game collectively.
other conditions would have to suffice, like distancing themselves as much as humanly possible from the 'dark ages' and all it entails.
china would have an advantage over the west in being less grounded in this way, but unfortunately for them, they are grounded in other, more restrictive ways; a dictatorial, communist system is not going to make the chinese leaders in this next generation type of stuff (beyond what we have today). it's their current systems that won't allow this, and it has nothing to do with individuals at all.