More-is-better ideals such as these have long shaped our vision of rationality. Yet humans and other animals typically rely on simple heuristics to solve adaptive problems, focusing on one or a few important cues and ignoring the rest, and shortcutting computation rather than striving for as much as possible.
Environmental catastrophe looms large over politics: from the young person’s climate march to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal, increasing amounts of political space are devoted to the issue. Central to this debate is the question of whether economic growth inevitably leads to environmental issues such as depleted finite resources and increased waste, disruption of natural cycles and ecosystems, and of course climate change. Growth is the focal point of the de-growth and zero-growth movements who charge that despite efficiency gains, increased GDP always results in increased use of energy and emissions. On the other side of the debate, advocates of continued growth (largely mainstream economists) believe that technological progress and policies can ‘decouple’ growth from emissions.
In this essay the authors take a look at how welfare could be provided in a degrowth society.
This book argues that mainstream economics, with its present methodological approach, is limited in its ability to analyze and develop adequate public policy to deal with environmental problems and sustainable development. Each chapter provides major insights into many of todays environmental problems such as global warming and sustainable growth.
"Ecological economics is an exciting interdisciplinary field of study that combines insights from the natural sciences, economics, philosophy and other fields to develop innovative approaches to environmental problems.
Based on a paper by Jason Hickel and Giorgos Kallis Decoupling refers to the separation of economic value creation material extraction and pollution. Ecological limits pose a challenge to growth-led development and the low historical and predicted rate of decoupling suggests that long-term sustainable growth-led development is impossible.
Decoupling debunked: Evidence and arguments against green growth as a sole strategy for sustainability
From the theoretical literature, the authors provide seven reasons to be sceptical about the occurrence of sufficient decoupling in the future. In addition to the extensive summary of the recent literature, 'decoupling debunked' provides a great introduction into the decoupling hypothesis.
As a response to ongoing economic, social and environmental crises, many private actors have enlarged their definition of 'value' to include environmental and social elements. Such practices, however, appear incompatible with the current epistemological structure of academic financial discourse.
What made the false assumption that saving the economy at all cost during a pandemic so popular? This paper discusses different pathways through the COVID-19 pandemic at national and international level, and their consequences on the health of citizens and their economies.
This book explores frontier work at the intersection of experimental and environmental economics, with cutting edge research provided by premier scholars in the field.The book begins by focusing on improving benefit-cost analysis, which remains the hallmark of public policy decision-making around the globe.
Research on consumption from an environmental perspective has exploded since the late 1990s. This important new volume cuts across disciplines to present the latest research in the field. The book is divided into three parts, the first of which addresses the problems of consumption both as a concept and as an economic and social force with high environmental impact.
Ecological economics addresses one of the fundamental flaws in conventional economics--its failure to consider biophysical and social reality in its analyses and equations. Ecological Economics: Principles and Applications is an introductory-level textbook that offers a pedagogically complete examination of this dynamic new field.
This is an introductory level core course in macroeconomics for those expecting to take further courses in economics. It provides a theoretical and applied approach of introductory macroeconomics, with an international perspective and applications to account for the growing importance of the global economy and the rising openness of economies.
This text summarizes the content of the 2018 Nobel Prize winner W. Nordhaus. It is extended by some critical perspectives on this topic. The short dossier gives an overview of the most important texts we have read in the climate economics reading group.
This course provides future change makers in public and private sectors with a comprehensive overview on the structures and actors that shape markets.
Economist and 2020 Balzan Prize winner for Environmental Challenges: Responses from the Social Sciences and Humanities, Joan Martínez Alier, speaks on the importance of ecological economics and its timeliness around the 2007/2008 global financial crisis. He speaks on the importance of building the field of ecological economics “from the ground up” through praxis.
The podcast exposes the concept and principles of co-operatives and the three main types of co-operatives: the consumer, credit and farmers buying and selling co-operatives. Furthermore, the history of the co-operative movement is presented. The authors draw the line from co-operatives to "degrowth" by arguing that these organisations discourage profit maximisation due to their ownership structure, their social purpose and their primacy of people over capital. The value of the members' co-operative share does not increase with the growth of a co-operative and it can not be used for speculation. Finally, the authors give examples for current co-operatives which empower (local) communities fostering social justice and environmentalism.
In this article, Gareth Dale analyzes and compares the main characteristics and differences of two visions that are currently emerging to tackle Climate Change: the Green New Deal and Degrowth. Which are the consequences from the environmental, economic and political point of view? And what are the underlying doctrines?
Andrew McAfee about the history of human progress and the modern uncoupling of our prosperity from resource consumption. They discuss the pitfalls and hidden virtues of capitalism, technological progress, environmental policy, the future of the developing world, and other topics.
Could working less make people and the planet better off? Find out in this dossier by exploring the landscape of working time reduction policies and their potential for reimagining, restructuring, and redistributing time as a political resource in the 21st century economy.
A review of:  Intermediate Microeconomics, H.R. Varian  Mikrooekonomie, R.S. Pindyck, D.L. Rubinfeld  Grundzuege der mikrooekonomischen Theorie, J. Schumann, U. Meyer, W. Stroebele
In this essay, Professor Robert Pollin explores the short falls of the degrowth perspective in handling the impending environmental collapse as well as elaborates on the efficacies of a green new deal.
This collection of videos offers a short introduction to ecological economics and its main differences with respect to environmental economics.
The British historian, Adam Tooze, highlights how the climate crisis is not just an environmental or ecological problem but also a political economy challenge.
Is degrowth bad economics To properly answer this question it is essential to understand what economic growth really is The term growth is often associated with an increase in wealth a term loosely defined but according to the degrowth movement economic growth is a narrower concept only describing an increase …
The goal of the class is to acquire familiarity with recently-published research in alternative macroeconomics with a focus on the distribution of income and wealth, cyclical growth models, and technical change.
Aim of this intensive workshop is to understand macroeconomic workings of climate change as as the background of sustainable finance; to analyse financial assets with ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance) criteria attached to them and their markets and important institutional players; to develop a critical perspective on the current setup of sustainable finance; and to synthesise this knowledge by applying it on in-depth case studies.
It is perhaps fitting that the seriousness of the coronavirus threat hit most of the Western world around the Ides of March, the traditional day of reckoning of outstanding debts in Ancient Rome. After all, problems and imbalances have accumulated in the Western capitalist system over four decades, ostensibly since it took the neoliberal road out of the 1970s crisis and kept going along it, heedless of the crises and problems it led to.
How do people make decisions? There is a class of models in psychology which seek to answer this question but have received scant attention in economics despite some clear empirical successes. In a previous post I discussed one of these, Decision by Sampling, and this post will look at another: the so-called Fast and Frugal heuristics pioneered by the German psychologist Gerd Gigerenzer. Here the individual seeks out sufficient information to make a reasonable decision. They are ‘fast’ because they do not require massive computational effort to make a decision so can be done in seconds, and they are ‘frugal’ because they use as little information as possible to make the decision effectively.
The core of Georgism is a policy known as the Land Value Tax (LVT), a policy which Georgists claim will solve many of society and the economy’s ills. Georgism is an interesting school of thought because it has the twin properties that (1) despite a cult following, few people in either mainstream or (non-Georgist) heterodox economics pay it much heed; (2) despite not paying it much heed, both mainstream and heterodox economists largely tend to agree with Georgists. I will focus on the potential benefits Georgists argue an LVT will bring and see if they are borne out empirically. But I will begin by giving a nod to the compelling theoretical and ethical dimensions of George’s analysis, which are impossible to ignore.
Sporting events can be seen as controlled, real-world, miniature laboratory environments, approaching the idea of “holding other things equal” when exploring the implications of decisions, incentives, and constraints in a competitive setting (Goff and Tollison 1990, Torgler 2009). Thus, a growing number of studies have used sports data to study decision-making questions that have guided behavioral economics literature.
How countries achieve long-term GDP growth is up there with the most important topics in economics. As Nobel Laureate Robert Lucas put it “the consequences for human welfare involved in questions like these are simply staggering: once one starts to think about them, it is hard to think about anything else.” Ricardo Hausmann et al take a refreshing approach to this question in their Atlas of Economic Complexity. They argue a country’s growth depends on the complexity of its economy: it must have a diverse economy which produces a wide variety of products, including ones that cannot be produced much elsewhere. The Atlas goes into detail on exactly what complexity means, how it fits the data, and what this implies for development. Below I will offer a summary of their arguments, including some cool data visualisations.