1915. Population and economics

Provocation #112 Population

As we look for positive plausible scenarios for the future we need to be imaginative, compassionate and realistic. Economics can play a crucial role in creating an economy that is supportive. But when the history of our time is written a key question will be: why didn’t we deal with the obvious?


We each have excuses but they don’t add up to much.

We have many examples of the collapse of societies through population.

Economics does not go after the most interesting phenomena of which population is certainly one. Increase in population destabilizes all existing relationships, requiring room of some kind to be made for the newcomers. But increase in population is also a stabilizer – if your focus is on the need for constant growth.

THIS IS SO OBVIOUS! Yet way ignored as a systems problem requiring and not getting very serious thought. The problem of population is compelling and interesting – but maybe even more so for economists is the phenomena of the avoidance itself. Why?

Book note.
“Remarkable book about the evolution of property and how this shaped human society. Impossibly, wonderfully broad in scope.”

The book is Owning the Earth. The Transforming History of Land Ownership by Andro Linklater. Posted in Twitter, by William Goetzman, who wrote the very terrific book Money Changes Everything. Matt Sware met him at Yale School of Management..





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