Degrowth (in French: décroissance, in Spanish: decrecimiento, in Italian: decrescita) is a political, economic, and social movement based on ecological economics and anti-consumerist and anti-capitalist ideas. It is also considered an essential economic strategy responding to the limits-to-growth dilemma (see The Path to Degrowth in Overdeveloped Countries and Post growth). Degrowth thinkers and activists advocate for the downscaling of production and consumption—the contraction of economies—arguing that overconsumption lies at the root of long term environmental issues and social inequalities. Key to the concept of degrowth is that reducing consumption does not require individual martyring and a decrease in well-being. Rather, 'degrowthists' aim to maximize happiness and well-being through non-consumptive means—sharing work, consuming less, while devoting more time to art, music, family, culture and community. Background Resource depletion  Serge Latouche
Related: sustainable social structures
Postdevelopment theoryPostdevelopment theory (also post-development, or anti-development) holds that the whole concept and practice of development is a reflection of Western-Northern hegemony over the rest of the world. Postdevelopment thought arose in the 1980s out of criticisms voiced against development projects and development theory, which justified them. Development as ideology The postdevelopment critique holds that modern development theory is a creation of academia in tandem with an underlying political and economical ideology. The academic, political, and economic nature of development means it tends to be policy oriented, problem-driven, and therefore effective only in terms of and in relation to a particular, pre-existing social theory. The actual development projects thus initiated, by both governments and NGOs, are directed in accordance with this development theory. Reviewing development Post-development theory Critique of ethnocentrism and universalism James Ferguson
Richard G. WilkinsonRichard Gerald Wilkinson (born 1943) is a British social epidemiologist, author and advocate. He is Professor Emeritus of Social Epidemiology at the University of Nottingham, having retired in 2008. He is also Honorary Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health at University College London and Visiting Professor at University of York. He is best known for his book with Kate Pickett The Spirit Level, first published in 2009, which claims that societies with more equal distribution of incomes have better health, fewer social problems such as violence, drug abuse, teenage births, mental illness, obesity, and others, and are more cohesive than ones in which the gap between the rich and poor is greater. Background Career Wilkinson's first book, Poverty and Progress was published by Methuen in 1973. On 16 December 1976, his article entitled 'Dear David Ennals' was published in New Society; at that time, David Ennals was Secretary of State for Social Services. Books
Charles EisensteinCharles Eisenstein is an author and public speaker, and self-described "degrowth activist". He is the author of several books including The Ascent of Humanity (2007), Sacred Economics (2011), and The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know Is Possible (2013). Life Born in 1967 to parents of Jewish descent, Eisenstein graduated from Yale University in 1989 with a degree in Mathematics and Philosophy. Eisenstein now frequently travels to speak and share his work at conferences and other events. Since 2010, he has spoken over three hundred times in over one hundred cities in US and elsewhere. Writings Books Eisenstein has written at least 6 books since 2001. The Ascent of Humanity The Ascent of Humanity, published in 2007, is a large book which draws together Eisenstein's thoughts on many topics. Sacred Economics The More Beautiful World Our Hearts Know is Possible Articles Charles also writes a regular blog for the website Reality Sandwich.
Sustainable cityA sustainable city, or eco-city is a city designed with consideration of environmental impact, inhabited by people dedicated to minimization of required inputs of energy, water and food, and waste output of heat, air pollution - CO2, methane, and water pollution. Richard Register first coined the term "ecocity" in his 1987 book, Ecocity Berkeley: Building Cities for a Healthy Future. Other leading figures who envisioned the sustainable city are architect Paul F Downton, who later founded the company Ecopolis Pty Ltd, and authors Timothy Beatley and Steffen Lehmann, who have written extensively on the subject. The field of industrial ecology is sometimes used in planning these cities. There remains no completely agreed upon definition for what a sustainable city should be or completely agreed upon paradigm for what components should be included. It is estimated that over 50% of the world’s population now lives in cities and urban areas. Practical achievement
Critique of technologyCritique of technology is an analysis of the negative impacts of technologies. It is argued that, in all advanced industrial societies (not necessarily only capitalist ones), technology becomes a means of domination, control and exploitation, or more generally something which threatens the survival of humanity. The critique of technology overlaps with the philosophy of technology but whereas the latter tries to establish itself as an academic discipline the critique of technology is basically a political project, not limited to academia. See also Sources Jump up ^ Theodore Kaczynski, Industrial Society and Its Future Further reading Michael Adas, Machines as the Measure of Men: Science, Technology, and Ideologies of Western Dominance, Cornell University Press 1990Jacques Ellul, The Technological Society, Trans. External links
Andy Burgess Wood Sculptor | Wood SculptorSustainable Society IndexAbstract When we were looking for a suitable yardstick to measure the level of sustainability of a country a suitable instrument could not be found. Although the main existing indexes were examined we had to conclude that none of them seem to fit our needs completely. The main shortcomings are a limited definition of sustainability, a lack of transparency or high complexity and an absence of regular updates. For this reason, a new index – the Sustainable Society Index (SSI) – has been developed. Using data from public sources, the SSI was initially developed for 150 countries and published in 2006. The underlying data, some of which are included in this article, allow in-depth analysis of the differences between countries. This article outlines the development of the SSI and the calculation methodology and gives the main results. 1. Sustainability is very much in the spotlight these days. Section 6 outlines proposals for use of the SSI. A conclusion is given in section 8. 2. 3. 3.2. 3.3.
PermacultureWith its system of applied education, research and citizen- led design permaculture has grown a popular web of global networks and developed into a global social movement. The term permaculture was developed and coined by David Holmgren, then a graduate student at the Tasmanian College of Advanced Education's Department of Environmental Design, and Bill Mollison, senior lecturer in Environmental Psychology at University of Tasmania, in 1978.  The word permaculture originally referred to "permanent agriculture", but was expanded to stand also for "permanent culture", as it was understood that social aspects were integral to a truly sustainable system as inspired by Masanobu Fukuoka’s natural farming philosophy. It has many branches that include, but are not limited to, ecological design, ecological engineering, regenerative design, environmental design, and construction. History Several individuals revolutionized the branch of permaculture. In Australian P.A.
Green anarchismGreen anarchism (or eco-anarchism) is a school of thought within anarchism which puts a particular emphasis on environmental issues. A green anarchist theory is normally one that extends anarchist ideology beyond a critique of human interactions, and includes a critique of the interactions between humans and non-humans as well. This often culminates in an anarchist revolutionary praxis that is not merely dedicated to human liberation, but also to some form of ecological liberation, and that aims to bring about an environmentally sustainable anarchist society. Early ecoanarchism Henry David Thoreau Anarchism started to have an ecological view mainly in the writings of American anarchist and transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau. As such "Many have seen in Thoreau one of the precursors of ecologism and anarcho-primitivism represented today in John Zerzan. Élisée Reclus Main article: Élisée Reclus Élisée Reclus, French anarchist geographer and early environmentalist