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2015 Publications


  • The Church of Economism and Its Discontents
    Essay

    The Church of Economism and Its Discontents

    Richard Norgaard

    December 2015

    Economism, the reigning ideology in economic policy, reduces social relations to market logic and functions as a secular religion for the global market economy. We need a new economics rooted in a belief system that embraces solidarity, sustainability, and well-being for all.

    With commentary from John Ashton, John Barry, Lourdes Benería, John Cobb, Jr., John Fullerton, Rahul Goswami, Jonathan Harris, Stephen Marglin, Chella Rajan, Sandra Waddock, and Stephen Woolpert, and a response from the author


  • The Earth Charter at 15: A Spiritual Lens on Sustainability
    Interview

    The Earth Charter at 15: A Spiritual Lens on Sustainability

    Steven Rockefeller

    December 2015

    The leader in the development of the Earth Charter discusses its legacy and prospects, as well as his own influences and evolution as an educator, advocate, and scholar in the nexus of ethics, spirituality, and the environment.


  • Bleak Visions, Blind Spots
    Review

    Bleak Visions, Blind Spots

    Patrick Schroeder

    December 2015

    In A Rough Ride to the Future, contrarian Gaia theorist James Lovelock counsels abandoning all hope of preventing global environmental change, and adapting to it instead. But by assuming the fixity of human behavior and institutions, he resigns humanity to a passive present and a grim future.


  • Marxism and Ecology: Common Fonts of a Great Transition
    Essay

    Marxism and Ecology: Common Fonts of a Great Transition

    John Bellamy Foster

    October 2015

    This essay uncovers the deep ecological roots of Marxism, finding concepts that anticipate such contemporary notions as sustainable development and planetary boundaries. This common wellspring, it argues, supports a unified socialist and ecological project for a Great Transition.

    Commentary from David Barkin, Michael Brie, Hannah Holleman, Tim Jackson, Giorgos Kallis, Kent Klitgaard, Ashish Kothari, Fred Magdoff, and Rasigan Maharajh, and a response from the author

  • Worker Cooperatives in a Globalizing World
    Interview

    Worker Cooperatives in a Globalizing World

    Josu Ugarte

    October 2015

    The former president of Mondragon International discusses how Mondragon, a renowned worker-owned cooperative, puts democracy and solidarity into practice, and shares his insights on the future of global cooperative enterprise.


  • Decolonizing the Empire of Cotton
    Review

    Decolonizing the Empire of Cotton

    Joshua Humphreys

    October 2015

    Sven Beckert’s Empire of Cotton offers a magisterial history of cotton’s role in the development of modern capitalism. However, it is a partial story: the bright light it shines on the “empire” and its masters occludes the array of social forces and actors working to tame or dismantle the emergent system.


  • Common Wealth Trusts: Structures of Transition
    Viewpoint

    Common Wealth Trusts: Structures of Transition

    Peter Barnes

    August 2015

    Modern society is imperiling our collective natural and cultural inheritance. New institutions like common wealth trusts can enable us to protect these resources and share their benefits equally, countering the tendency of contemporary capitalism to destroy nature and widen inequality.

    Commentary by Tom Bowerman, Thomas Hanna, Marjorie Kelly, Rajesh Makwana, James Quilligan, Brent Ranalli, Neera Singh, Elizabeth Stanton, Andy Stirling, and a response from the author

  • Change Agent: Evolution of a Systems Champion
    Interview

    Change Agent: Evolution of a Systems Champion

    Gus Speth

    August 2015

    Gus Speth reflects on his distinguished career in environmental advocacy, public service, and higher education, discusses his new memoir Angels by the River, and reflects on the prospects for systemic change in the twenty-first century.

  • A Tragic Scenario: Narrowly Cast
    Review

    A Tragic Scenario: Narrowly Cast

    Jonathan Cohn

    August 2015

    In The Collapse of Western Civilization, Naomi Oreskes and Erik Conway depict a dystopian future resulting from climate inaction. But the constricted dramatis personae in their scenario stacks the deck against the social agents that could emerge to alter the narrative.


  • Economics for a Full World
    Essay

    Economics for a Full World

    Herman Daly

    June 2015

    We live in a full world but still behave as if it were empty. The urgent task ahead of us is to create an economy that remains within the earth’s carrying capacity while rethinking the ultimate purpose of the economy itself.

    Commentary by John Barry, Nancy Folbre, Tim Jackson, Giorgos Kallis, Robert Paehlke, Stephen Purdey, Alan Willis, and Eric Zencey, and a response from the author


  • Economics vs. the Economy
    Viewpoint

    Economics vs. the Economy

    William Rees

    June 2015

    Operating from a realistic paradigm that understands the economy as embedded in the ecosphere is the key to transitioning to a sustainable civilization. Will the increasing unfitness of growth-obsessed neoliberal economics to our social and ecological realities spell its demise?


  • Growing, Growing, Gone: Reaching the Limits
    Interview

    Growing, Growing, Gone: Reaching the Limits

    Dennis Meadows

    June 2015

    The Limits to Growth has had a profound impact on environmental research and discourse over the past four decades. Dennis Meadows discusses the genesis of the report and its lessons for our uncertain and perilous global future.


  • Bounding the Planetary Future: Why We Need a Great Transition
    Essay

    Bounding the Planetary Future: Why We Need a Great Transition

    Johan Rockström

    April 2015

    Humanity is pushing the Earth system into a post-Holocene state that very well could be inhospitable to human civilization. The urgent imperatives of respecting planetary boundaries and transforming the development paradigm have become complementary aspects of a single social-ecological project.


    Commentary by Noel Castree; John Bellamy Foster; Maarten Hajer, Marcel Kok, and Kathrin Ludwig; Richard Heinberg; Jill Jäger; Karen O'Brien; Kate Raworth; and John Robinson and David Maggs, and a response from the author


  • Dialogical Citizenship: Dancing Toward Solidarity
    Essay

    Dialogical Citizenship: Dancing Toward Solidarity

    Joseph Camilleri

    April 2015

    Our interdependent world demands stronger global governance rooted in a sense of global citizenship. Nurturing such an enlarged identity requires balancing  universalism and pluralism through a dialogical process of reconciliation.


  • Global Scenarios: Explorations in the Scientific Imagination
    Interview

    Global Scenarios: Explorations in the Scientific Imagination

    Gilberto Gallopín

    April 2015

    Global futures pioneer Gilberto Gallopín discusses the origins of contemporary global scenario analysis, the ways worldviews can influence our sense of the future, and how the scenario approach offers a powerful way to envision unconventional tomorrows and guide actions today.


  • The Degrowth Alternative
    Viewpoint

    The Degrowth Alternative

    Giorgos Kallis

    February 2015

    The "degrowth movement" has captured wide attention in recent years. Giorgos Kallis, an eminent scholar of this movement, explains its aims of opening up space for imagining and enacting alternative visions to modern growth-based development.


    Commentary by Nicholas Ashford, Maurie Cohen, Herman Daly, Al Hammond, Michael Karlberg, Rajesh Makwana, Mary Mellor, Robert Nadeau, Robert Paehlke, Richard Rosen, Tilman Santarius, Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker, Allen White, and Anders Wijkman, and a response from the author

  • Uniting Nations: The UN at a Crossroads
    Interview

    Uniting Nations: The UN at a Crossroads

    Achim Steiner

    February 2015

    The Executive Director of the UN Environment Programme comments on pivotal forthcoming international developments—the launch of the UN's Sustainable Development Goals and the Paris climate negotiations—and the UN's role in fostering a sustainable future.


  • Mass Extinction: Is the Enemy Us?
    Review

    Mass Extinction: Is the Enemy Us?

    Umair Muhammad

    February 2015

    In The Sixth Extinction, Elizabeth Kolbert powerfully documents a planetary tragedy. But the book is heedless of social roots of and solutions for the crisis, indicting, instead, essential flaws in human nature and offering only fatalistic despair.