If everyone lived sustainably, what would their lives be like?

Duncan Green - February 21, 2018

Guest post from Andrew Fanning, Marie Skłodowska-Curie Research Fellow in the Sustainability Research Institute at the University of Leeds. His research finding that no country currently meets the basic needs of its citizens at a globally sustainable level of resource was recently published in the journal Nature Sustainability (author summary here and there’s an interactive website). Here he reflects on a further insight from that …

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What are the politics of our survival as a species? Introducing the Climate Change Trilemma

Duncan Green - November 22, 2017

So a physicist, an anthropologist, and two political economists have lunch in the LSE canteen and start arguing about climate change….. I was (very notionally) the physicist; my other lunchtime companions were Robert Wade, Teddy Brett and Jason Hickel (the anthropologist). Jason was arguing for degrowth and reminded me of the excellent debate on this blog a couple of years ago between Kate Raworth and …

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Review of Doughnut Economics – a new book you will need to know about

Duncan Green - April 6, 2017

My Exfam colleague Kate Raworth’s book Doughnut Economics is launched today, and I think it’s going to be big. Not sure just how big, or whether I agree with George Monbiot’s superbly OTT plug comparing it to Keynes’s General Theory. It’s really hard to tell, as a non-economist, just how paradigm-changing it will be, but I loved it, and I want everyone to read it. …

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Doughnut Economics is published next week. Here’s why you should be excited

Duncan Green - March 29, 2017

Kate Raworth’s book, Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st Century Economist is published next Thursday. I loved it , and I’ll review it properly then, but here are three excerpts to whet your appetite: On the importance of diagrams: ‘Think, then, of the circles, parabolas, lines and curves that make up the core diagrams in economics – those seemingly innocuous pictures depicting …

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Davos & Inequality Continued: What does an alternative economic vision for the future look like?

Duncan Green - January 17, 2017

Deborah Hardoon, who really ought to be resting on her laurels after her report for Davos went viral yesterday, springs to the defence of (the right kind of) economics. Nerd Alert. As a student of economics, I always found the technical aspects of the subject deeply satisfying. Getting to the ‘right’ answer using algebra and statistics, solving ‘proofs’ and finding that stable equilibrium. Bliss. But …

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How does Change Happen in global commodities markets? The case of Palm Oil

Duncan Green - August 4, 2015

This week’s Economist had an interesting discussion of the change process in the global palm oil industry. I assume all its claims are highly contested, but still, allow me to walk you through it and what it says about how change happens in one bit of the private sector. The basics: a boom industry with a dire track record of deforestation, labour rights abuses on the …

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What kind of sustainable development goals should emerge from Rio?

admin - June 15, 2012

This post was also published today on the Guardian’s Poverty Matters blog I attended an ‘expert panel’ discussion recently on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Originating in a proposal by the Colombian government for what comes after 2015, when most of the Millennium Development Goals expire, some initial progress on the SDGs is being increasingly seen as one of the few wins from a rather …

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The doughnut is on a roll: where next for doughnut economics?

admin - June 14, 2012

Kate Raworth, Oxfam research colleague and host of the new ‘doughnut economics’ blog, updates us on her big idea, prior to Rio+20 My Oxfam discussion paper on social and planetary boundaries – aka the Doughnut – has gained a striking degree of traction in the debates running up to Rio+20. It’s been picked up by commentators such as George Monbiot, Grist and by the UN …

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How good/bad are different countries at turning carbon emissions into development?

admin - February 28, 2012

One result of the doughnut economics discussion is that we need to think much more about the carbon efficiency of development. So which countries are getting the best return on rising carbon emissions, in terms of life expectancy and per capita income? Here are two animated graphics of 13 country trajectories. The thirteen major countries comprise more than half of the world’s population and carbon …

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'The doughnut ‘compass’ is a powerful idea': Earth scientists respond to the doughnut…….

admin - February 14, 2012

Some initial thoughts on yesterday’s post on doughnut economics from Mark Stafford Smith and Will Steffen. Mark (left) is Science Director of the Climate Adaptation Flagship at CSIRO, Australia’s national science agency, and is Co-chair of the upcoming Planet Under Pressure: New Knowledge towards Solutions conference in London, March 2012. Will Steffen (right) is Executive Director of the Climate Change Institute at the Australian National …

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