Sustainable Consumption beyond the Growth Economy
Dr Samuel Alexander leads this innovative research program exploring the problematic issues of our current growth-orientated economy, identifying the limits to growth (such as resource scarcity and climate change) and exploring various strategies for moving ‘beyond growth’.
Transitioning to sustainable patterns of consumption and production requires an interdisciplinary understanding of various social, economic, and ecological issues, as well as an understanding of the structural and systemic factors which can ‘lock in’ unsustainable forms of economy.
How can seven billion people and counting flourish within environmental limits? What does sustainable consumption really mean? And what are the social justice (especially distributive) implications of living in an age of ecological overshoot?
Aims and activities
- Acquire a deeper understanding of planetary limits and their implications
- Develop new economic paradigms that would enable humankind to live within planetary limits.
- Explore the most effective social, economic and political transition pathways beyond unsustainable growth trajectories
- Envision new futures based on alternative conceptions of prosperity
- Bring together practitioners, researchers, and decision-makers working in the fields of new economy, sustainable consumption, and sustainability transitions
- Policies for a Post-Growth Economy
- Notes from the Frontier, Griffith Review Issue 52
- Prosperous Descent: Crisis as Opportunity in an Age of Limits
- Sufficiency Economy: Enough, for Everyone, Forever
- Simple Living in History: Pioneers of the Deep Future
- Entropia: Life Beyond Industrial Civilisation
- Voluntary Simplicity: The Poetic Alternative to Consumer Culture
Films & Interviews
- A Simpler Way: Crisis as Opportunity. A documentary about simple living, permaculture, and local economy as a response to global crises, produced by Samuel Alexander and Jordan Osmond. See below.
- A selection of interviews conducted in the making of this film can be found here. These include interviews with Ted Trainer, Nicole Foss, Helena Norberg Hodge, Graham Turner, David Spratt and David Holmgren.
- Life in a degrowth economy and why you migth actually enjoy it, The Conversation
- Material world: why we're wired to consume, The Age
- Limits to growth: policies to steer the economy away from disaster, The Conversation
- Growth shouldn't be exclusively about economics, The Age
- Sustained economic growth: United Nations mistakes the poision for the cure, The Conversation
- The 'green tech' future is a flawed vision of sustainability, The Conversation
- If everyone lived in an ecovillage, the Earth would still be in trouble, The Conversation
- Sick to death of consumerism? Find freedom in a tiny house, The Conversation
- We need economic 'degrowth' to stop a carbon budget blowout, The Conversation
Dr Samuel Alexander, Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute