Envisioning a Sustainable World
What a wonderful talk and essay. I note, especially, these sentences: "And having such a vision alive in me prevents me from selling out to ...a vision of perpetual economic growth, which is pretty much the vision that the entire field of economics gives us. Growth isn’t what I want. Growth has nothing to do with what I want. And I think that the only reason growth—which is a terribly abstract and, when you think about it, stupid vision of the future—can be sold so easily in every policy arena is that there’s no alternative vision."
My own humble efforts together together with economist/planner Michael Oden's to help fill out Meadows' vision can be found in a paper with the self-explanatory title: "Better Is Better Than More: Complexity, Economic Progress, and Qualitative Growth."
The intuition is in line with Herman Daly's: Our economies can "grow" sustainably and indefinitely by substituting quality for quantity: quality is a manifestation of evolutionary complexity, which can increase independent of material and energic input. Complexity is the space into which economies can grow indefinitely, as biological nature already has for billions of years.
For a more comprehensive account, please go to http://soa.utexas.edu/files/csd/wps201101.pdf, which Herman Daly has called "important work."
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Getting to 350: Building Strategies for 21st Century Aspirations
Bowdoin College's Phil Camill offers a fresh perspective to the issues surrounding environmental change.
Designing the Future of the Earth Co-operatively.
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