Table of Contents

Beyond Uneconomic Growth

Beyond Uneconomic Growth

Economics, Equity and the Ecological Predicament

Advances in Ecological Economics series

Edited by Joshua Farley and Deepak Malghan

This engaging book brings together leading ecological economists to collectively present a definitive case for looking beyond economic growth as the sole panacea for the world’s ecological predicament. Grounded in physics, ecology, and the science of human behavior, contributors show how economic growth itself has become “uneconomic” and adds to a ravaging of both social and ecological cohesion.

Chapter 7: Denying Herman Daly: why conventional economists will not embrace the Daly vision

William E. Rees

Subjects: economics and finance, environmental economics, environment, ecological economics


This chapter contrasts key elements of the dominant neoliberal free market brand of economics with Herman Daly’s steady-state ecological economics and provides a partial explanation of why the world prefers the former to the latter. To those who rigorously compare the two visions, there is little question that the Daly brand is more rational and better grounded in reality. Yet in half a century it has gained little traction in the minds of the public and policy makers alike. This is no mere academic dispute. If pervasive influence is the measure, traditional neoliberal economists may well be the most universally acclaimed of performers on the global economic stage. Nevertheless, my starting premise is that for all the seeming elegance of their analyses, neoliberal economists are little better than master illusionists. The audience will therefore be excused for feeling betrayed – or merely silly – if the stage is left empty when the magician’s mist of abstract equations has finally dissipated on the evening air. Neoliberal economists should take no special offence at having their sleight-of-hand exposed.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information