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Postgrowth and Wellbeing

Challenges to Sustainable Welfare

Authors: Büchs, Milena, Koch, Max

  • Carves a new path in the debate on how to ensure a sustainable and more equal existence for future generations
  • Offers a detailed, sociological approach to the question of how post-growth societies will function
  • Provides important insights for policy-makers and social movements
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Buy this book

eBook £31.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-59903-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover £39.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-59902-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This book presents a detailed and critical discussion about how human wellbeing can be maintained and improved in a postgrowth era. It highlights the close links between economic growth, market capitalism, and the welfare state demonstrating that, in many ways, wellbeing outcomes currently depend on the growth paradigm. Here the authors argue that notions of basic human needs deserve greater emphasis in debates on postgrowth because they are more compatible with limits to growth. Drawing on theories of social practices, the book explores structural barriers to transitions to a postgrowth society, and ends with suggestions for policies and institutions that could support wellbeing in the context of postgrowth. This thought-provoking work makes a valuable contribution to debates surrounding climate change, sustainability, welfare states and inequality and will appeal to students and scholars of social policy, sociology, political science, economics, political ecology and human geography.

About the authors

Milena Büchs is Associate Professor in Sustainability, Economics and Low Carbon Transitions, University of Leeds, UK.

Max Koch is Professor in Social Policy at Lund University, Sweden. 

Reviews

 “Transition to a postgrowth economic order is now becoming much more widely accepted as essential to long term social and environmental wellbeing.  But the implications for the quality and provision of welfare have hitherto been little researched.  This conceptually challenging but at the same time empirically grounded discussion provides a much needed addition to the literature of the degrowth movement. “ (Kate Soper, Emerita Professor of Philosophy at London Metropolitan University)

 “Like it or not, growth may be coming to an end. How to sustain welfare without growth is a core question for our times. This book presents the boldest attempt to think what viable welfare systems could look like in global steady state.” (Giorgos Kallis, Research Professor at the Autonomous University of Barcelona)

 “At a time when leading economists are horrified by the specter of secular stagnation affecting advanced capitalist economies, theorists of “postgrowth” a

nd a global “steady state economy” embrace the idea that its arrival might even enhance human wellbeing and need satisfaction. But who knows what kind of views our future selves, even our descendents, may form about the requisites of wellbeing and the good life? Are we trapped in the social practices of mindless consumerism/productivism and GDP fetishism or ready to consider the worth of an economy that minimizes ecologically harmful levels of resource extraction and waste production? Büchs and Koch provide a concise, systematic and crystal clear account of what social sciences (including psychology and philosophy) have to offer on these questions – a critical account that is clinically clean of jargon and alarmist gesturing.” (Claus Offe, Professor Emeritus of Political Sociology at the Hertie School of Governance)

“Endless economic growth will destroy the planet but a post-growth economy threatens security and wellbeing. Büchs and Koch provide an honest and concise

accoun

t of the dilemma and a guide to some ways forward.” (Ian Gough, Emeritus Professor of Social Policy at the University of Bath, Visiting Professor at the London School of Economics)

 “Concise and well-written, this book offers an historical and comparative perspective on the changing relationship between wellbeing, economic growth, and ecological perspectives as they intersect with the welfare state. Scholars, university students, and activists interested in the relationship between capitalism, environmental policy, and the welfare state should read this book.” (Daniel Béland, Canada Research Chair in Public Policy and Professor at the Johnson-Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy)

Table of contents (8 chapters)

  • Introduction

    Büchs, Milena (et al.)

    Pages 1-8

  • Capitalist Development and the Growth Paradigm

    Büchs, Milena (et al.)

    Pages 9-24

  • Growth and the Welfare State as We Know It

    Büchs, Milena (et al.)

    Pages 25-37

  • Critiques of Growth

    Büchs, Milena (et al.)

    Pages 39-56

  • Postgrowth and Human Wellbeing

    Büchs, Milena (et al.)

    Pages 57-87

Buy this book

eBook £31.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-59903-8
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF, EPUB
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover £39.99
price for United Kingdom (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-319-59902-1
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Postgrowth and Wellbeing
Book Subtitle
Challenges to Sustainable Welfare
Authors
Copyright
2017
Publisher
Palgrave Macmillan
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s)
eBook ISBN
978-3-319-59903-8
DOI
10.1007/978-3-319-59903-8
Hardcover ISBN
978-3-319-59902-1
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XV, 144
Number of Illustrations and Tables
8 b/w illustrations
Topics