From a Failed Growth Economy to a Steady-State Economy
Lead Author: Herman Daly (other articles)
Article Topic: Ecological economics
This article has been reviewed and approved by the following Topic Editor: Robert Costanza (other articles)
Last Updated: June 5, 2009
Speaker: Herman E. Daly
Date: June 1, 2009
Event: United States Society for Ecological Economics bi-annual meeting
Location: American University, Washington D.C.
Video: Coming Soon
EDITOR'S NOTE: Herman E. Daly (1938-) is an American economist recognized as one of the founders of the field of ecological economics and as an eloquent critic of standard economic growth theory. He has worked for decades in proposing a steady state economy, and has argued that polices were needed to guide society towards a constant population, a constant material standard of living, and a equitable distribution of wealth. The U.S. Society for Ecological Economics awarded Dr. Daly a life time achievement award during their bi-annual conference in Washington DC in 2009. Part of the award was the compilation of a Festschrift.
A steady-state economy is incompatible with continuous growth—either positive or negative growth. The goal of a steady state is to sustain a constant, sufficient stock of real wealth and people for a long time. A downward spiral of negative growth, a depression such as we are entering now, is a failed growth economy, not a steady-state economy. Halting an accelerating downward spiral is necessary, but is not the same thing as resuming continuous positive growth. . . .
From the Encyclopedia of Earth