A Modern Guide to Rethinking Economics
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A Modern Guide to Rethinking Economics

Edited by Louis-Philippe Rochon and Sergio Rossi

Since the beginning of the 21st century, there has been an unprecedented move towards ‘rethinking economics’. This book contributes to this worldwide discussion by providing readers at all levels with thoughtful contributions on a range of economic topics. The book includes chapters on rethinking fiscal and monetary policies, international trade, the role of the state, money, growth, the environment, development policies, energy, healthcare and more. Written by top experts in their respective fields, this book will be useful to students and faculty who want to not only rethink economics, but also to offer an alternative and coherent economic analysis to the orthodoxy.
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Chapter 18: Rethinking energy

Lynne Chester

Abstract

The energy regime upon which capitalism is dependent is not the object of analysis for mainstream economics. Energy is treated by mainstream economics as an abstract adjunct to the capitalist economy in the form of inter alia an intermediate production input, a market, a commodity, a relationship to economic growth or the source of production externalities such as resource depletion and pollution. This chapter posits an alternative analytical framework drawn from French Régulation theory, which, using institutions as the focus of enquiry, situates the analysis of energy within its context of use within capitalism and the processes of economic change.

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