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Heat, Greed and Human Need

Climate Change, Capitalism and Sustainable Wellbeing

Ian Gough

This book builds an essential bridge between climate change and social policy. Combining ethics and human need theory with political economy and climate science, it offers a long-term, interdisciplinary analysis of the prospects for sustainable development and social justice. Beyond ‘green growth’ (which assumes an unprecedented rise in the emissions efficiency of production) it envisages two further policy stages vital for rich countries: a progressive ‘recomposition’ of consumption, and a post-growth ceiling on demand. An essential resource for scholars and policymakers.
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Acknowledgements

Climate Change, Capitalism and Sustainable Wellbeing

Ian Gough

Thanks are due first of all to Graham Room at the University of Bath, with whom I discussed the relationship of climate change and social policy a decade ago and who encouraged me to edit a debate on the topic that appeared in the Journal of European Social Policy that he was co-editing. John Hills and David Held supported my visiting professorship at the LSE, and John and colleagues in the Centre for the Analysis of Social Exclusion (CASE) provided a welcoming base when I moved to London in 2009. At the same time the ESRC awarded me a two-year Small Grant to research ‘Climate change and social policy: Rethinking the political economy of the welfare state’ (ES/H00520X/1). Subsequently, Simon Dietz and the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at the LSE have funded generous research assistance. This afforded me the excellent research and bibliographic skills of in turn Sam Marden, Cindy Smith, Alex Stark, Erin Nash and Geraldine Satre Buisson. James Angel at the New Economics Foundation and Mario Battaglini at CASE have also provided timely research help. Thanks too to Alex Pettifer at Edward Elgar for his enthusiastic support for this book.

For reading and commenting on the entire first draft I’m deeply grateful and indebted to John Barry, Kate Pickett, Graham Room and Robin Stott. Other colleagues and friends who’ve advised on chapters or substantial chunks of the manuscript include Tania Burchardt, Simon Dietz, Fergus Green, Geoff Hodgson, Giorgos Kallis, Tim Kasser, Max Koch, Stephan Leibfried, Jane Millar, John O’Neill, Narasimha Rao, Julia Steinberger and Marko Ulvila. I’m grateful to them all. Since they all disagree with each other in many ways it is perhaps unnecessary to state that I alone am responsible for the final product.

This book is based on a dozen or more articles and chapters written over the past decade, and these too have been guided and assisted by other colleagues and friends – as well as a collection of anonymous referees. They include Alex Bowen, Sarah Cook, Michael Dover, Len Doyal, Robert Falkner, Kevin Farnsworth, Des Gasper, Howard Glennerster, Monica Guillen-Royo, John Hills, Michael Jacobs, Alexandra Kaasch, James Meadowcroft, Paul Ormerod, Guy Standing, Paul Stubbs, Peter Taylor-Gooby, Göran Therborn, Karen Turner and Polly Vizard. Peter Taylor-Gooby also contributed to the title.

Google and the Mac Finder have progressively replaced my waning memory. Without them this book would have taken much longer to write.

Finally, this book would not exist at all were it not for Anna Coote. She it was who convinced me that climate change must be taken seriously. Having achieved that, she has been with me from the very start of the project to this end. Her work on the Sustainable Development Commission and subsequently at the New Economics Foundation has been an inspiration. She has supplied ideas and arguments, maintained my optimism, kept me focused on longer-term radical futures, yet insisted on linking ideas with policy and implementation, and cajoled me to write in reasonably accessible English. This book would not exist without her love and collaboration, and I dedicate it to her.