History is important because it is only in learning about and understanding the past that we can make sense of the present and plan for a successful, peaceful and prosperous future which avoids the perilous mistakes of the past. For example, careful study of the struggles of our forbears to survive, and to acquire new lands and territories, helps us to understand important issues such as the reasons for wars and conflict in various societies.
Looking back at the distribution of wealth and the running of the economy gives insights into the present, and how we can make the future better and more equal for the many not just the few. For example, we can come to understand the thinking behind our welfare system and the way in which the fairer distribution of wealth and earnings can avoid the misery of the poor who may otherwise want to engage in social unrest to draw attention to injustice.
Examining social and cultural attitudes from the past helps us to see how building a multi-cultural society can increase harmony across the globe, making life more peaceful and prosperous for everyone. Reading about events from the past, and about notable individuals who have influenced history, helps us to see how our world got to the point it has reached now and how it will continue to progress in the future. There are some who believe that history is no longer a vibrant subject to study compared to Computer Science or Digital Technologies or Business because history studies concern only the very distant past, but this approach doesn't take into account the considerable body of modern history which is now studied in great depth. For example, studying the Arab–Israeli conflict down through the ages gives insights into the causes and triggers for hatred and terrorism which still exist today. In order to understand current affairs and the sometimes shocking news we see on our screens every day, it is important to study our human history, as all that happens around us has been influenced by, and is a result of, the events that preceded it.
We can even look back into history to gain clues about fighting diseases we have today and this can inform better, more modern sanitation and hygiene initiatives to improve health around the world so that all societies can benefit. The study of history is directly relevant to us as it helps to explain issues around war, politics, health and even business.