To transform society, as climate science insists we must, we need a new economics
Lightly regulated corporate capitalism – a.k.a. neoliberalism – has done much to get us into this mess, with its view of the earth’s finite resources as ‘natural capital’ to be ruthlessly extracted and exploited. The economic theory underpinning this – 'neoclassical economics' – has been taught in universities and faithfully accepted by mainstream political parties for forty years. GDP is its metric; endless growth is its goal. But this economic orthodoxy is being challenged. Doughnut Economics, for example, pioneered by Kate Raworth, defines its goal as ‘thriving’ communities, living within planetary boundaries. Another big idea is degrowth, which argues that to avoid climate catastrophe (and for many other good reasons), we need to extract, produce and consume less stuff – and in the words of Jason Hickel, ‘become more’.
A person buying insurance does so because he or she is concerned about the future. A house fire could lead to a financial wipe-out. With climate change, risks are growing in threat and severity with the result that insurers have been stung repeatedly with huge losses. What is a world without insurance?
Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think like a 21st Century Economist. By Kate Raworth.
Best selling introduction to the doughnut shaped alternative to growth-driven economics.
The Growth Delusion: The Wealth and Well Being of Nations.
David Pilling outlines how GDP came to be the all-important economic metric for governments.
FILM AND VIDEO
A Green New Deal for people and places. The New Economics Foundation. Jan 14, 2022.
The Green New Deal would not only curb the worst effects of climate breakdown but would reprogram our economy so that it works for everyone. Blake House filmmakers coop visited people and places across the country to ask what the Green New Deal would mean for them. From farmers in Lancashire to students in Warwickshire, participants share what a fairer and greener future might look like for their communities, and express the need for a big, bold reimagining of our economy in order to get there. Find out how we can an achieve a Green New Deal:
Fairytales of Growth, April 17, 2020. A film on Climate Change, Degrowth and System Change.
The effects and risks of climate change are compelling young people the world round to call upon radical system change as the only solution to avoid a catastrophic collapse. Featuring Jason Hickel, LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, Wendy Harcourt, Giorgos Kallis, Marta Conde, Alnoor Ladha, Filka Sekulova, Federico Demaria, Rupert Read, Tokata Iron Eyes, Maria Marcet and Greta Thunberg. Original score by Marvin Dez and Oliver King (geminimooncollective(at)gmail.com), this film looks at the role economic growth has had in bringing about this crisis, and explores the alternatives to it, offering a vision of hope for the future and a better life for all within planetary boundaries.
Wellbeing Economy Alliance
Uniting 'organisations, alliances, movements and individuals working towards a wellbeing economy.’