Contributors: Martinez-Alier, Joan, Prof. (Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain)
Catalan economist, Professor of Economics and Economic History and researcher at ICTA at the Autonomous University of Barcelona. Author of "Ecological Economics: Energy, Environment and Society" (1990), "The Environmentalism of the Poor: A Study of Ecological Conflicts and Valuation" (2002), co-editor of "Ecological Economics from the Ground Up" (2012). Editor since 1990 of the journal Ecologia Politica. Director of the EJOLT project, 2011-15.
Katalanischer Wirtschaftswissenschaflter. Professor der VWL und Wirtschaftsgeschichte an der Autonomen Universität Barcelona. Autor von „The Environmentalism of the Poor: A Study of Ecological Conflicts and Valuation" (2002) und Mitherausgeber von "Ecological Economics from the Ground Up" (2012). Direktor des EJOLT-Projokts.
Scientific paper contribution 1: What is Degrowth? – From an Activist Slogan to a Social Movement
The paper is co-authored by Dr Francois Schneider, Filka Sekulova, Joan Martinez Alier
Abstract: Degrowth is the literal translation of ‘décroissance’, a French word meaning reduction. Launched by activists in 2001 as a challenge to growth, it became a missile word that sparks a contentious debate on the diagnosis and prognosis of our society. ‘Degrowth’ became an interpretative frame for a new social movement where numerous streams of critical ideas and political actions converge. It is an attempt to re-politicise debates about desired socio-environmental futures and an example of an activist-led science now consolidating into a concept in academia. This article discusses the definition, origins, evolution, practices and construction of degrowth. The main objective is to explain degrowth’s multiple sources and strategies in order to improve its basic definition and avoid reductionist criticisms. To this end, the article presents degrowth’s main intellectual sources as well as its diverse strategies (oppositional activism, building of alternatives and political proposals) and actors (practitioners, activists and scientists). Special Session: Alternative imaginaries: buen vivir, radical ecological democracy and degrowth