Richard Norgaard, Professor Emeritus of Energy and Resources, University of California, Berkeley.
DeGrowth: A Vocabulary for a New Era” illuminates diverse concepts for clear thinking, provides us with new languages for political discourse, and outlines the many steps we can take to recreate our economy, our lives, and our relations to planet Earth. Call it what you want: happiness, living within limits, community, real democracy – DeGrowth both calls and empowers us to bold action.”
Silvia Federici, Professor Emerita of Social Science at Hofstra University, Hempstead.
D’alisa et al book is an excellent introduction to the politics of “degrowth” in its different meanings and dimensions that are analyzed and catalogued in dozens of entries providing an indispensable point of reference for anyone interested in joining the debates surrounding this perspective. It is also an eye-opener to the evolution of the concept. For as the editors’ introduction demonstrates, ‘degrowth’ for many signifies a variety of initiatives —time banks, local currencies, urban gardens, solidarity economies— proposing an alternative to capitalist accumulation and the reconstruction of our reproduction on more cooperative terms. This then is a volume that those committed to building non exploitative relations will need to consult as it offers a map to the world of alternatives to capitalisms.
Massimo De Angelis, Professor of Political Economy and Development at the University of East London, London.
This dictionary is a vital resource for those who want to engage with the diverse networks of ideas and traditions, analytical concepts and theories known as Degrowth. It is also one indispensable compass to find orientation in the complex simplicity of alternatives.
Ashish Kothari, member of Kalpavriksh, Pune; and co-author of ‘Churning the earth: The Making of Global India’.
Humanity has already crossed the ecological limits of the earth; we have been terrible guests of our planet. Radical steps to reduce our impacts are our most crucial task, particularly so for those parts of the world that have been responsible for unsustainable development pathways. It needs to be heeded even by so-called ‘developing’ countries as they blindly follow the same pathways. Degrowth is very much a part of the global search for alternative ways of human well-being that are sustainable and equitable, and this book offers a comprehensive exploration of its various dimensions. The section on ‘Alliances’ from non-western perspectives is a bit thin, but a welcome beginning to the possibilities of a truly global framework of values that could lead us out of our collective planetary crisis.
Sunita Narain, Director of the Centre of Science and Environment Delhi; and editor of the magazine Down To Earth.
Reinventing the growth trajectory is equally critical for the rest of the world in this age of climate risk and present and future danger. Degrowth is then the new vocabulary that we must learn and practice.
Marina Fischer-Kowalski, Founder and long-term of the Institute of Social Ecology at Alpen Adria University, Vienna.
In times marked by political stupor, it is refreshing to have such a light-footed guide through a universe of anti-mainstream ideas ranging from conviviality to Ubuntu, and from urban gardening to entropy.
Herman Daly, Emeritus Professor of Ecological Economics at University of Maryland, Maryland.
For the poor to grow up to a steady-state economy that is sufficient for a good life and sustainable for a long future, the rich must make ecological space by de-growing down to the same sufficient (not luxurious) steady-state level. Essays in this collection recognize the necessity to face this difficult convergent task of justly sharing our finite world.
Clive Hamilton, Professor of Public Ethics at the Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics, Charles Sturt University and University of Melbourne, Melbourne. Author of ‘Growth fetish and Earthmasters’.
The editors invite the reader to make their own voyage through this book. It is sage advice, for readers will wander through a wonderland of radical thoughts, intriguing observations and bold visions for a different kind of world. It’s exciting and deeply subversive.
James Gustave Speth, Professor of Law at the Vermont Law School, Royalton. Author of ‘America the possible: manifesto for a new economy’.
We know that there are limits of growth just as there are limits to growth. The former teaches us that beyond a certain size of the economy, certainly as measured by GDP, more growth does’t increase welfare but reduces it, so that society would be better off with less GDP. Many “advanced” countries today are already beyond that point and are experiencing what Herman Daly calls “uneconomic growth.” This exciting book is a pioneering exploration of the recently come-of-age field of degrowth economics and policy. It will be landmark for all those who want to transcend the growth fetish that has so many enthralled today.
Inge Røpke, Professor of Ecological Economics Aalborg University, Copenhagen.
We really need to develop a vocabulary for a new era, and this timely book takes us a great step forward by providing an impressive collection of concepts and ideas related to the degrowth debate. It is a very useful resource for both newcomers and seasoned participants. Due to the broad coverage, everyone can find inspiration and new links between ideas by following one’s own personal track through the entries – it is a pleasure.
Deepak Malghan, Professor of Ecological Economics at Indian Institute of Management Bangalore, India, and Princeton University, USA.
This volume is indispensable for anybody interested in moving beyond mere retrofit solutions to the most important economic and ecological conundrums of our time. This book helps bury several oxymoron-constructs masquerading as solutions to the human predicament. It achieves this by landing definitive intellectual and political blows to both the desirability and possibility of unfettered economic growth as a panacea for all ills.
Wolfgang Sachs, Professor of Social Science at the Wuppertal Institute, Berlin. Editor of: ‘The Development Dictionary: A Guide to Knowledge as Power’.
What a splendid vocabulary! A range of international authors brilliantly surveys the emerging field of an economics which bids farewell to the obsession of growth. The entries are compact yet eloquent, learned yet action-oriented. In the new style of economic thought, ideas like sharing, frugality, debt-free money, dematerialization, and digital commons play a leading role. Whoever wants to know more about an economy of permanence for the 21th century should reach for this book.
Maria Kaika, Professor in Human Geography, University of Manchester, Manchester.
In this timely and important (both academically and politically) contribution, D’Alisa, Demaria and Kallis offer the definitive collection on Degrowth. Comprising 51 compelling contributions by key international scholars, the collection juxtaposes in a critical manner the economic, social, political, and ecological aspects of the Degrowth thesis, to mainstream debates on economic development, sustainable growth and environmental (in)justice. This is an invaluable source of knowledge and inspiration for anyone interested academically or politically in alternative ways of thinking and acting about the environment and development. The collection is of interest to economists, political scientists, ecologists, geographers, planners, environmentalists, activists, development scholars, anthropologists, policy makers, and to anyone who wishes to think and act in ways that transcend the current environmental and economic impasse.
John Bellamy Foster, Professor of sociology at the University of Oregon, Eugene; and editor of Monthly Review and author of ‘Marx’s ecology’.
Degrowth takes the false coin of economic growth via capital accumulation and confronts it head on: There is no wealth but life and to protect life on the planet and to ensure the future for all it is necessary to exit the current system of production. This is the essential message for our time.
Karen Bakker, Professor and Canada Research Chair Director, Program on Water Governance, Universty of British Columbia, Vancouver.
A thought-provoking, wide-ranging, spirited, and deeply original analysis; this book is a must-read on degrowth debates.
Ariel Salleh, Professor of Social Science at Friedrich Schiller University, Jena.
Degrowth thinking is a strategic meeting place for many trends in contemporary environmental politics, and this encyclopaedic compendium, at once widely accessible and deeply informative, will be invaluable in advancing the work of both academics and activists committed to building eco-sufficiency and global justice.
David Graeber, Professor of Anthropology at London School of Economics, London.
At a time in history when political, economic and intellectual leaders assure us that nothing fundamental can any longer be questioned, nothing could be more important than the movement – of thought, and of action – that this volume on Degrowth represents. It raises the prospect of finally ejecting the twin demons of productivism and consumerism that are responsible for so many historical failures of the left as well as the right, and begins to set about the real work of imagining and building a society fit for human beings to live in.
Manuel Castells, Professor Emeritus of City And Regional Planning, University of California, Berkeley.
This book is one of the most thorough and insightful presentations and discussion of economic theory and practice in the field of de-growth economics, a revolutionary attempt to understand the economy as if humans and Nature matter.
Stefania Barca, Environmental Historian at University of Coimbra, Coimbra.
Degrowth is more than just an idea: it is a dream. A recurrent, collective dream that has spread from philosophers and visionary economists to a variety of social movements that have put it into practice by activating economies of care. Born in the 1970s, it has survived the neo-liberal hegemony and – as this book convincingly shows – has gone more political (and more feminist) through collective thinking and social practices such as squatting, urban agriculture, work-sharing, and other forms of common-ing, developed in the last decade. Like it or not, this persistence of the concept must be recognized, and credit given to its capacity of spurring new debates and new forms of social mobilization, appealing to all those who continue to see ‘growth’ as a false solution to social problems and a true disaster for the environment.
Alberto Acosta, Professor of Economics at FLACO University and ex-President of the National Constitutional Assembly of Ecuador
Breaking away from myths has always been difficult…But this is the spirit of the contributions of this book which ask: will it be possible to escape from the monster of growth? The answer is simple. It is is not only possible, but indispensable. But is also not sufficient. We also need to think new utopias to orient us. And these one can find in this book … Those utopias imply a critique of perverse reality as well as the patient construction in solidarity of new and diverse options. …Alternatives imagined collectively and implemented democratically…