Economic Growth – Good or Bad

The Australian millionaire Dick Smith wants to know it once and for all. He promised one million Australian Dollars for whoever demonstrates in a scientific study that eternal economic growth is no answer for the problems of our planet.

Brightnews! Already children have internalized: More, bigger, stronger, smarter, richer is supposed to be better. However, there are more and more economists elaborating on the question whether prosperity and progress are possible in a world with stable economic output. It’s intuitively understandable: More income does not necessarily lead to more life satisfaction and we just cannot produce ever more goods, use more resources and consume more on a finite planet. Still, practical implications of these two obvious insights remains scarce and our economic and finance systems are still pretty much focused on growth. Also, all countries that featured decreasing economic output for any longer period of time (or shorter by the way) felt and feel like very much in negative terms about it and not really as freedom of the growth myth. Therefore, it is very positive indeed that Dick Smith now tries to launch a renewed discussion on growth and its alternatives. Let’s just hope that he gets something more useful for his money than just an even bigger heap of paper.

Source: Die Zeit

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