An Argentine/Latin American Perspective On Degrowth

Tierramerica, May 10, 2012
By Marcela Valent

The controversial concept of degrowth receives little press coverage in a region like Latin America. But the idea of a way of life that is not aimed exclusively at GDP growth does have its proponents in Argentina… “Whether the discussion of degrowth will achieve a greater impact remains to be seen. There are groups pushing for a different kind of development, which challenge the prevailing model of production, but they don’t have a favorable cultural environment,” said Argentine social scientist Julio Gambina. The pursuit of growth persists as the consensus ideology in the region, which is why the degrowth debate has not gained widespread support, Gambina stressed. He believes the emphasis should not be on “degrowing” but rather on “growing in a different way.”… “GDP only counts what is created, and doesn’t subtract what is destroyed,” he explained. “Perhaps there are cases where GDP is lower, as in Cuba or Venezuela, but quality of life or the distribution of wealth improves. Social well-being is not necessarily tied to economic growth,” he said

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