Transforming Production: An Open Design Distributed Manufacturing Symposium | P2P Foundation

by Jose Ramos

A quiet revolution has been underway in material production, in agriculture, construction and manufacturing. A global design commons now provides people with opportunities to draw on a global legacy of human creativity. New technologies allow people to produce locally what was previously only possible by large companies. To explore this further, I am organising an event in Melbourne, Australia, that will bring together experts in the areas of additive manufacturing, industrial design, the maker movement, and ecological economics.

DATE AND TIME: Fri, May 12, 2017, 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM AES

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The OECD and the Hegemony of Growth

The 400 page book can be downloaded from this dropbox folder.

In modern society, economic growth is considered to be the primary goal pursued through policy-making. But when and how did this perception become widely adopted among social scientists, politicians, and the general public? Focusing on the OECD, one of the least understood international organizations, Schmelzer offers the first transnational study to chart the history of growth discourses. He reveals how the pursuit of GDP growth emerged as a societal goal and the ways in which the methods employed to measure, model, and prescribe growth resulted in statistical standards, international policy frameworks, and widely accepted norms. Setting his analysis within the context of capitalist development, postwar reconstruction, the Cold War, decolonization, and industrial crisis, The Hegemony of Growth sheds new light on the continuous reshaping of the growth paradigm up to the neoliberal age and adds historical depth to current debates on climate change, inequality, and the limits to growth.

Matthias Schmelzer is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Zürich, Switzerland

Table of Contents

List of figures and tables page vii
Acknowledgments viii
List of abbreviations xi

Introduction 1

Setting the stage: a historical introduction to the OECD 34

Part I Paradigm in the making: the emergence of economic growth as the key economic policy norm (1948–1959) 75

1 Measuring growth: the international standardization of national income accounting 85
2 Propagating growth: from reconstruction and stability to “selective expansion” and “productivity” 117
3 “Expand or die”: international economic mandarins and the transnational harmonization of growth policies 142

Part II Paradigm at work: a “temple of growth for industrialized countries” in action (19601968) 163

4 Power, progress, and prosperity: growth as universal yardstick and the OECD’s 1961 growth target in
perspective 167
5 Boosting growth: the Western “growth conscience” and social engineering in the name of accelerated growth 189
6l Replicating growth: the “development of others” and the hegemony of donor countries 215

Part III Paradigm in discussion: the “problems of modernsociety,” environment, and welfare (19691974) 239

7 Quantity in question: challenging the hegemony of growthand the OECD-Club of Rome nexus 245
8 Reclaiming growth: organizational dynamics and the“dialectic” of qualitative growth 267
9 Quantifying quality: managing the environmental costs ofgrowth and the difficult quest for “gross national well-being” 288

Epilogue: paradigm remade (19752011) 313

Conclusion: provincializing growth 336

Archival sources and select bibliography 359

Index 375

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

How degrowth relates to other movements |

With over 30 texts collected in the project Degrowth in Movement(s) we seek to offer opposition to both the prevailing paradigm of growth, and to the increase in tendencies disdainful of human life and values. The project Degrowth in Movement(s) shows a mosaic of alternatives for a social-ecological transformation —a mosaic that is all the stronger and more fascinating through its diversity.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Special issue on Degrowth at the Journal of Political Ecology

Volume 24 (2017) of the JPE has a special section of 15 articles (#s 23 to 37 of 38) on “Degrowth, Culture and Power” edited by Lisa L. Gezon and Susan Paulson

Below are the links to a PDF of each article on the Journal’s web site. I have also created a page with the abstracts of each article for those of you who want to pick and choose from amongst this treasure of good materials.

  1. Susan Paulson. Degrowth: culture, power and change. JPE 24: 425-448. PDF Abstract
  2. Robin M. LeBlanc. Designing a beautifully poor public: postgrowth community in Italy & Japan. JPE 24: 449-461. PDF Abstract
  3. Eric Hirsch. The unit of resilience: unbeckoned degrowth and the politics of (post)development in Peru and the Maldives. JPE 24: 462-475. PDF Abstract
  4. Ritu Verma. Gross National Happiness in Bhutan: meaning, measure and degrowth in a living development alternative. JPE 24: 476-490. PDF Abstract
  5. Jonathan Otto. Finding common ground: exploring synergies between degrowth and environmental justice in Chiapas, Mexico. JPE 24: 491-503. PDF Abstract
  6. Ragnheiður Bogadóttir and Elisabeth Skarðhamar Olsen. Making degrowth locally meaningful: the case of the Faroese grindadráp. JPE 24: 504-518. PDF Abstract
  7. Joshua Lockyer. Community, commons, and degrowth at Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage. JPE 24: 519-542. PDF Abstract
  8. Amy Cox Hall. Neo-monastics in North Carolina, de-growth and a theology of enough. JPE 24: 543-565. PDF Abstract
  9. Eeva Berglund. Steering clear of politics: local virtues in Helsinki’s design activism. JPE 24: 566-581. PDF Abstract
  10. Lisa L. Gezon. Beyond (anti)utilitarianism: khat & alternatives to growth in northern Madagascar. JPE 24: 582-594. PDF Abstract
  11. Emma McGuirk. Timebanking in New Zealand as a prefigurative strategy within a wider degrowth movement. JPE 24: 595-609. PDF Abstract
  12. Ulrich Demmer and Agata Hummel. Degrowth, anthropology, and activist research: the ontological politics of science. JPE 24: 610-622. PDF Abstract
  13. Alf Hornborg. How to turn an ocean liner: a proposal for voluntary degrowth by redesigning money for sustainability, justice, & resilience. JPE 24: 623-632. PDF Abstract
  14. Karen Foster. Work ethic and degrowth in a changing Atlantic Canada. JPE 24: 633-643. PDF Abstract
  15. Jonathan DeVore. Trees and springs as social property: a perspective on degrowth and redistributive democracy from a Brazilian squatter community. JPE 24: 644-666. PDF Abstract
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

What Quebec Can Teach Us About Creating a Social Economy – Resilience

These scenes of economic activity are different in a notable way from similar ones occurring throughout North America.

Each enterprise involves a cooperative or non-profit organization — which together make up 8-10 percent of the province’s GDP. More than 7,000 of these “social economy” enterprises ring up $17 billion in annual sales and hold $40 billion in assets (Canadian dollars). They account for about 215,000 jobs across Quebec.

Quebec’s social economy (also translated as “solidarity economy”) extends far beyond the province’s two major cities, and includes manufacturing, agricultural cooperatives, daycare centers, homecare services, affordable housing, social service initiatives, food co-ops, ecotourism, arts programs, public markets, media, and funeral homes. The capital that fuels all this economic activity comes from union pension funds, nonprofit loan funds, credit unions, government investment, and philanthropy.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

A Degrowth Fable: No More Devil’s Bargains by Aaron Vansintjan

One autumn, a farmer has a killer harvest — but he doesn’t have a barn to store it in. “If only I had the money, or enough able hands, to build a new barn,” he says to himself. Then, out of nowhere, a man with a hat and petticoat — and a funny smell — appears, and tells him, “I can build you a barn overnight. I have the money and the labor power.”

“How? And what will it cost me?”

“It won’t cost you a thing: I just need you to sign right here in blood. And by the time the rooster crows, your barn will be ready.”

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Finally, a breakthrough alternative to growth economics – the doughnut

Monbiot in the Guardian

In Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist, Kate Raworth of Oxford University’s Environmental Change Institute reminds us that economic growth was not, at first, intended to signify wellbeing. Simon Kuznets, who standardised the measurement of growth, warned: “The welfare of a nation can scarcely be inferred from a measure of national income.” Economic growth, he pointed out, measured only annual flow, rather than stocks of wealth and their distribution.

Review by Tim Jackson

Economics is broken. It has failed to predict, let alone prevent, financial crises that have shaken the foundations of our societies. Its out-dated theories have permitted a world in which extreme poverty persists while the wealth of the super-rich grows year on year. And its blind spots have led to policies that are degrading the living world on a scale that threatens all of our futures. Can it be fixed? In Doughnut Economics, Oxford academic Kate Raworth identifies seven critical ways in which mainstream economics has led us astray, and sets out a roadmap for bringing humanity into a sweet spot that meets the needs of all within the means of the planet. En route, she deconstructs the character of “Rational economic man” and explains what really makes us tick. She reveals how an obsession with equilibrium has left economists helpless when facing the boom and bust of the real-world economy. She highlights the dangers of ignoring the role of energy and nature’s resources – and the far-reaching implications for economic growth when we take them into account. And in the process, she creates a new, cutting-edge economic model that is fit for the 21st century – one in which a doughnut-shaped compass points the way to human progress. Ambitious, radical and rigorously argued, Doughnut Economics promises to reframe and redraw the future of economics for a new generation. “Brimming with creativity, Raworth reclaims economics from the dust of academia and puts it to the service of a better world.” (Tim Jackson, author of Prosperity Without Growth).

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment