Circular economy in diagrams: where logic breaks down and where financial incentives can work

Are your circle economy diagrams confusing your audience? This article aims to help you communicate clearly. As a staunch aficionado of reaching a resilient economy through sustainability I am all for circle economy thinking- if it ensures people get food on the table and a roof over their heads. Unclear delivery will not help our cause. We talk of circle economy from two angles: economy as a form of housekeeping and economy in terms of monetary flows. These are not always the same thing. The final section suggests a solution.



Strategic Newsletter Launches: September Edition 2013

Signals of Change newsletter  monitors the news flow from a wide variety of sources from the last 30 – 60 days for developments that could inform your organization’s social and environmental strategy which in turn could affect your overall business strategy.  Signals of Change Newsletter is produced in  cooperation between the Open World Foundation, the Institute of Swedish Safety and Security and Stephen Hinton Consulting.

The newsletter is released once a month to subscribers only. (To subscribe and be fully up to date – it’s free – click here). The newsletter is released a few weeks later for public reading on partner websites. […]

Overshoot day August 20: will “economic” reality meet resource reality?

Let us look at overshoot day from the point of view of economics. By economics I mean the technology of keeping track of housekeeping with resources and keeping track of material obligations to those around us.  Economics does not need to be restricted to counting with money. Other measures can be used. And it is fascinating to try it. In this case we can consider that a Nation has its own household that it needs to keep fed and housed, and has its natural resources to do it. We start with a situation however where many nations are living over their means. […]

Would you like extra IT with that, Sir?

Someone has to say it: digitalising your life might not be all good. Anyone who has checked their I-Phone whilst on the toilet will probably have an inkling that something is not going right. The fundamental problem is that everyone working in the IT industry wants to sell more IT.  And those outside would like Read more about Would you like extra IT with that, Sir?[…]

Envisioning a world without work

We are getting closer to 1984 and Brave New World, where people work but that has nothing to do with the cost of living, rather something they just have to do. In this article in the Guardian,  Nina Power analyses the disparity between the value add workers bring, to the amount of wages they take home. The theory has been that if Read more about Envisioning a world without work[…]

Suppose capitalism mimicked the way nature works.

Article updated June 6 after consideration of all the recent comments We are stuck. On the one hand you have people who talk about economic growth as being the objective of policy – necessary to be able to pay back debts and achieve prosperity. On the other hand, you have the sustainable camp that claims Read more about Suppose capitalism mimicked the way nature works.[…]

A philosophical exploration of what “sustainable” and “technology” are

What we call technology is actually a narrow practice including mechanics, electronics and computer science. This confusion is hampering human development, especially when the expectation is on not developing financial and social technology but demanding mechanical solutions when simple agreements could suffice. Modern technology is failing, we are not addressing the challenges in front of us. For some reason, our very use of language is holding us back and preventing us from thinking clearly. […]

Is corporatocracy the way you really want to go?

What is the best way to organise society? That question has been around since we started to be able to talk. In my world I like to add “what is the best way to organise society so it develops resilience and sustainability”. I  have pointed  to writers like Aldous Huxley who, in his book “Brave Read more about Is corporatocracy the way you really want to go?[…]

Reinvent work as volunteerism – the only way to sustainability

It has been striking me more and more recently how the positive developments in sustainability are coming from a spirit of volunteering. ”Going along” is a central theme of my book, ”Inventing for the Sustainable Planet”. The book was imagestreamed and insights can take a long time to sink in. I see how I have Read more about Reinvent work as volunteerism – the only way to sustainability[…]

If the national economy were run as a football game…

The modern economy has undoubtedly given millions better lives.

However, despite years of experience and development of macroeconomic theory, despite decades of Nobel prizes in Economics, there still doesn’t appear to be a way to run an economy without putting severe hardship on a large percentage of the population.

And this state of affairs is generally accepted.

Especially women, wives and mothers. It is women who end up suffering take from this hardship.

The other thing that I know that women particularly care about is the environment. Again, it is also generally accepted that pollution is unavoidable and depletion of natural resources the unavoidable price for economic stability. The costs of pollution and depletion are not paid for directly by the producers or consumer, but by society as a whole. They are called externalities. Externalities, it seems, are unavoidable if we want a stable economy.

But let us not just give in. Let us look at possibilities. […]