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Natural capital in the macroeconomy

  • Partha Dasgupta (a1)

Extract

A problem in urgent need of attention in modern industrial societies is to discover ways to de-link aggregate output from recorded employment. If the loss were shared in a manner deemed fair by the general public, there would be nothing catastrophic for people in a country where the average income is 35,000 international dollars a year to suffer an income loss of even 25 per cent, let alone 5 per cent. Average income in the UK in 1990 was about 25 per cent less than in 2005. It's hard to maintain that UK citizens experienced significantly lower levels of personal wellbeing in 1990 than they did in 2005. Revival of research on competitive consumption (e.g., Veblen's ‘conspicuous consumption’) and reports on ‘life satisfaction’ suggest that a general rise in private consumption among a population enjoying a high standard of living adds little to happiness, or indeed to objectively measured indices of wellbeing.

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Natural capital in the macroeconomy

  • Partha Dasgupta (a1)

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