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Degrowth is a rejection of the illusion of growth and a call to repoliticize the public debate colonized by the idiom of economism. It is a project advocating the democratically-led shrinking of production and consumption with the aim of achieving social justice and ecological sustainability. This overview of degrowth offers a comprehensive coverage of the main topics and major challenges of degrowth in a succinct, simple and accessible manner. In addition, it offers a set of keywords useful for intervening in current political debates and for bringing about concrete degrowth-inspired proposals at different levels [en] local, national and global. The result is the most comprehensive coverage of the topic of degrowth in English and serves as the definitive international reference.
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... In effect, they strive for a society that operates under ecological limits in a just and democratic way, and prioritizes human well-being (Kallis, 2011). However, despite this shared goal, the origins of degrowth remain complex and transdisciplinary, as it embraces diverse imaginaries and social movements (D'Alisa et al., 2014). Accordingly, the contributors to the SI have interpreted and applied degrowth differently in their work, reflecting their disciplinary and epistemological background. ...
... Second, further research is needed to explore the relevance and impact of degrowth in localities beyond the global North, as the ongoing rapid development of cities in the global East and South may well pose a very different set of planning challenges. While heterogeneity within degrowth is often considered as its strength (Chertkovskaya et al., 2019;D'Alisa et al., 2014), identifying commonalities across degrowth currents and practices globally could empower the degrowth movement further. Third, as degrowth calls for societal transformation, further reflection is needed on how planning theory can better address the transformative edge of planning, particularly in relation to its normative and forward-looking dimension. ...
... Degrowth is a multi-layered concept (D'Alisa et al., 2014). It combines critiques of capitalism (Feola, 2019), colonialism (Hickel, 2021), patriarchy (Hanaček et al., 2020), productivism (Kallis, 2019), and utilitarianism (Romano, 2019), whilst envisioning more caring (Dengler and Lang, 2022), just (Muraca, 2012), convivial (Vetter, 2018), happy (Fanning et al., 2021), and democratic societies (Brand et al., 2021). ...
Article
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Degrowth – the planned and democratic reduction of production and consumption as a solution to the social-ecological crises – is slowly making its way to the sphere of policy-making. But there is a problem: proposals are scattered through a voluminous literature, making it difficult for decision-makers to pinpoint the concrete changes associated with the idea of degrowth. To address this issue, we conducted a systematic mapping of the degrowth literature from 2005 to 2020 using the RepOrting standards for Systematic Evidence Syntheses (ROSES) methodology. Out of a total of 1166 texts (articles, books, book chapters, and student theses) referring to degrowth, we identified 446 that include specific policy proposals. This systematic counting of policies led to a grand total of 530 proposals (50 goals, 100 objectives, 380 instruments), which makes it the most exhaustive degrowth policy agenda ever presented. To render this toolbox more accessible, we divided it into in 13 policy themes – food, culture and education, energy and environment, governance and geopolitics, indicators, inequality, finance, production and consumption, science and technology, tourism, trade, urban planning, and work – systematically making the difference between goals, objectives, and instruments. Following this, we assess the precision, frequency, quality, and diversity of this agenda, reflecting on how the degrowth policy toolbox has been evolving until today.
... While a fuller elaboration of the convivial conservation vision has been published elsewhere , it can be summarized as a postcapitalist, political economic approach to conservation that aims to integrate and reconnect people and nature in landscapes across different scales, spaces and times. The convivial conservation vision functions within the broader transformative vision of degrowth: an overall quantitative downsizing of economic throughput to ecologically sustainable levels coupled with widespread wealth redistribution to make this reduction "socially sustainable" (D'Alisa et al., 2015;Hicks et al., 2016;Holland et al., 2009;Kallis, 2011;Raworth, 2017;Wilkinson and Pickett, 2010). Within these overarching contexts, convivial conservation defines specific parameters for a fundamentally different form of conservation that does not separate people and nature. ...
Chapter
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Increasingly heated debates concerning species extinction, climate change and global socioeconomic inequality reflect an urgent need to transform biodiversity governance. A central question in these debates is whether fundamental transformation can be achieved within mainstream institutional and societal structures. Chapter 12 argues that it cannot. Indeed, mainstream neoprotectionist and natural capital governance paradigms that do not sufficiently address structural issues, including an increase of authoritarian politics, might even set us back. The way out, the chapter contends, is to combine radical reformism with a vision for structural transformation that directly challenges neoliberal political economy and its newfound turn to authoritarianism. Convivial conservation is a recent paradigm that promises just this. The chapter reviews convivial conservation as a vision, politics and set of governance mechanisms that move biodiversity governance beyond market mechanisms and protected areas. It further introduces the concept of “biodiversity impact chains” as one potential way to operationalize its transformative potential.
... While the theoretical debate around degrowth is emergent and lively 4,7,8 , few studies have attempted to quantify degrowth propositions in modelling work to assess how effectively such proposals meet stated goals. Integrated assessment modelling of future environmental scenarios without the precondition of economic growth, especially in the Global North, are needed 3,9 . ...
Article
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Degrowth proponents advocate reducing ecologically destructive forms of production and resource throughput in wealthy economies to achieve environmental goals, while transforming production to focus on human well-being. Here we present a quantitative model to test degrowth principles in the food and land system. Our results confirm that reducing and redistributing income alone, within current development paradigms, leads to limited greenhouse gas (GHG) emission mitigation from agriculture and land-use change, as the nutrition transition towards unsustainable diets already occurs at relatively low income levels. Instead, we show that a structural, qualitative food system transformation can achieve a steady-state food system economy that is net GHG-neutral by 2100 while improving nutritional outcomes. This sustainable transformation reduces material throughput via a convergence towards a needs-based food system, is enabled by a more equitable income distribution and includes efficient resource allocation through the pricing of GHG emissions as a complementary strategy. It thereby integrates degrowth and efficiency perspectives.
... There are also substantial differences in applicability in different parts of the world and in different contexts (our primary focus here is wealthy nations such as the UK and the USA). For a more detailed discussion of ecological economics policy proposals, see Daly and Farley, 30 Dietz and O'Neill, 53 D'Alisa and colleagues, 52 Jackson,26 and Raworth. 27 ...
Article
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Despite substantial attention within the fields of public and planetary health on developing an economic system that benefits both people's health and the environment, heterodox economic schools of thought have received little attention within these fields. Ecological economics is a school of thought with particular relevance to public and planetary health. In this article, we discuss implications of key ecological economics ideas for public and planetary health, especially those related to critiques of gross domestic product as a measure of progress and economic growth as the dominant goal for economic and policy decision making. We suggest that ecological economics aligns well with public health goals, including concern for equality and redistribution. Ecological economics offers an opportunity to make the transition to an economic system that is designed to promote human and planetary health from the outset, rather than one where social and environmental externalities must be constantly corrected after the fact. Important ideas from ecological economics include the use of a multidimensional framework to evaluate economic and social performance, the prioritisation of wellbeing and environmental goals in decision making, policy design and evaluation that take complex relationships into account, and the role of provisioning systems (the physical and social systems that link resource use and social outcomes). We discuss possible interventions at the national scale that could promote public health and that align with the prioritisation of social and ecological objectives, including universal basic income or services and sovereign money creation. Overall, we lay the foundations for additional integration of ecological economics principles and pluralist economic thinking into public and planetary health scholarship and practice.
Thesis
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This thesis identifies a research gap on the role of economic organisations in connection to degrowth and problematises that past research fails to view economic organisations as encompassed by capitalist structures. The thesis seeks to contribute to the degrowth discourse by filling part of this research gap by researching the role of economic organisations in achieving degrowth and the resulting implications for these organisations. The thesis makes use of Gramsci’s conceptualisation of hegemony and counter-hegemony to define degrowth as a counter-hegemony seeking to overcome the capitalist hegemony. The thesis finds that economic organisations must operate in line with a mode of production that can fit degrowth (such as commons-based peer production) and aim to shape society’s superstructure to help enable a degrowth transition. The resulting contradiction of aligning with an alternative mode of production is further unfolded using Luhmann’s social systems theory together with the concept of counter-hegemony. This theoretical investigation highlights that organisational social systems aligned with degrowth counter-hegemony face a paradox in having to embrace uncertainty in their social systemic reproduction. The thesis’ empirical findings show that economic organisations (on the example of commons-based peer production organisations) can align with degrowth through awareness of the afore mentioned contradiction and aiming to overcome it. These economic organisations require a strong alignment with degrowth counter-hegemony in their decision premises, particularly cognitive routine (the conceptualisation of the organisations system environment). The thesis highlights that such an alignment might only be achieved and ensured by keeping a relatively small organisational membership. The concept of scaling-wide is therefore proposed to create degrowth aligned networks of economic organisations that could further help to ensure counter-hegemonic reproduction. Ultimately, the thesis also makes a plea to the degrowth discourse to take charge of research on economic organisations in connection to degrowth to ensure counter-hegemonic alignment.
Article
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This essay proposes a theory of post-neoliberal social citizenship, re-imagining the work-welfare nexus with a view to articulating individual freedom and social solidarity; democratic renewal and environmental sustainability. Taking an interdisciplinary perspective, the essay first interrogates the relationship between work and freedom, problematizing the neoliberal understanding of emancipation as labour market empowerment. It then suggests, drawing from the feminist literature, a conceptualization of work beyond paid employment as the "practice of taking care of the world." This conceptualization is politi-cized: it demands democratic deliberation for establishing its precise meaning and can provide the basis for both new solidarities and democratic renewal. The essay thus sketches a model of post-neoliberal eco-social citizenship, which reconciles individual emancipation (from and within the labour market) with democratization and environmental sustainability. In this context, participatory-deliberative democracy partially substitutes the market mechanism as a system for evaluating the value of human activities and for coordinating individuals' freedoms. This allows increasing the democratic control over the economy for directing it towards the promotion of sustainable social welfare, enhancing human flourishing opportunities for all within planetary boundaries.
Article
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The economic discipline is characterised by hierarchical dualisms. This paper examines formal/informal and productive/reproductive binary categories by means of a dialogue between the social reproduction theory and the popular economy. A starting point is the wealth of feminist contributions that highlight both reproduction and work as the heart of socioeconomic phenomena. Based on formalization processes in Latin America, the article explores how public policy interventions focus on the productive sphere. However, upon closer examination, these policies seem to neglect reproductive activities, as well as the demands of popular sectors. We argue that the contributions of feminism are necessary to broaden the economic field.
Article
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El propósito de este texto es analizar la (s) reforma (s) laboral (es) en Brasil y España de manera descriptiva y plasmada en un caso particular derivado de la formación histórica del mundo del trabajo regido por los marcos regulatorios de ambos países. Los datos empíricos aquí discutidos se basan en el análisis del cambio en la legislación laboral (pos-reformas) que consideramos importante, apoyados en algunos datos secundarios obtenidos a través de institutos de investigación que catalogaron cambios en el trabajo sobre el terreno. La idea de que las metamorfosis actuales en el mundo del trabajo tienen una tendencia a la precariedad, fragmentación y flexibilidad en las relaciones laborales es un fenómeno social omnipresente, como hemos demostrado a lo largo de este artículo. En una trayectoria marcada por el deterioro de las condiciones de vida de la classe-que-vive-do-trabalho, este estudio comparativo demuestra que estas diferencias son menores de lo que imaginamos anteriormente, incluso en el caso de un país miembro de la Unión Europea (capitalismo central) y un Mercosur. país (en desarrollo), las condiciones de vida se acercan, se nivelan por debajo.
Book
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Basic Income is a policy idea that could help us revolutionise the way we organise society. This book is the first proper guide to basic income -- what it is, how we can organise it, and how it can benefit the majority in different spheres of their lives. Basic Income is simply the idea that everyone in a given society has a right to a minimal income. This is paid by the state out of taxation. Set at a subsistence level, it would take the place of unemployment and other benefits. This would bring profound social changes. Anyone could opt out of employment at any time. Those with few skills would no longer be forced to take up jobs with poor prospects, and employers offering McJobs would be forced to offer better terms. And money wasted by the state in means testing and tracing benefit fraud is saved The campaign in favour of basic income is growing and governments are beginning to take notice. This is a clear, concise guide to the principles and practicalities of this revolutionary idea.
Article
This paper raises basic questions about the process of economic growth. It questions the assumption, nearly universal since Solow’s seminal contributions of the 1950s, that economic growth is a continuous process that will persist forever. There was virtually no growth before 1750, and thus there is no guarantee that growth will continue indefinitely. Rather, the paper suggests that the rapid progress made over the past 250 years could well turn out to be a unique episode in human history. The paper views the future from 2007 while pretending that the financial crisis did not happen.
Book
This posthumous collection of interviews and occasional papers given by Castoriadis between 1974 and 1997 is a lively, direct introduction to the thinking of a writer who never abandoned his radically critical stance. It provides a clear, handy résumé of his political ideas, in advance of their times and profoundly relevant to today's world. For this political thinker and longtime militant (co-founder with Claude Lefort of the revolutionary group "Socialisme ou Barbarie"), economist, psychoanalyst, and philosopher, two endless interrogations-how to understand the world and life in society-were intertwined with his own life and combats. An important chapter discusses the history of "Socialisme ou Barbarie" (1949-1967); in it, Castoriadis presents the views he defended, in that group, on a number of subjects: a critique of Marxism and of the Soviet Union, the bureaucratization of society and of the workers' movement, and the primacy of individual and collective autonomy. Another chapter presents the concept, central to his thinking, of "imaginary significations" as what make a society "cohere." Castoriadis constantly returns to the question of democracy as the never-finished, deliberate creation by the people of societal institutions, analyzing its past and its future in the Western world. He scathingly criticizes "representative" democracy and develops a conception of direct democracy extending to all spheres of social life. He wonders about the chances of achieving freedom and autonomy-those requisites of true democracy-in a world of endless, meaningless accumulation of material goods, where the mechanisms for governing society have disintegrated, the relationship with nature is reduced to one of destructive domination, and, above all, the population has withdrawn from the public sphere: a world dominated by hobbies and lobbies-"a society adrift."