Contributors: Diefenbacher, Hans, Prof. Dr. (FESt)
Scientific paper contribution 1: The National Welfare Index as a potential instrument for the transition towards a Degrowth society?
The paper is authored by Prof. Dr. Hans Diefenbacher and co-authored by Dorothee Rodenhäuser
Abstract: The debate on indicators ‚beyond GDP’ has considerably regained momentum in the last years. However, a majority of current indicator proposals rather seeks to complement traditional economic indicators in order to support “green” growth. Very few are directed to support a degrowth strategy, while a significant share of proposals remains ambiguous about growth. The National Welfare Index (NWI) is such an ambiguous indicator. We investigate whether indices like the NWI could nevertheless be useful instruments for a transition towards a degrowth society. In the first place, we address the question of the basic legitimacy of monetarized indices. In our second step, we shortly present the results of the NWI for Germany and its Länder applications and give an overview of the public discussion evoked. We then address the question of methodological compatibility of NWI and degrowth ideas. Following a summary of pro and contra arguments relating to the potential of NWI to support a transition towards degrowth, we conclude on ways to go ‘beyond NWI’.
Scientific paper contribution 2: Beyond globalization – the legacy of Richard Douthwaite (1942 – 2011) for a degrowth economy: First contribution: The scientific work of Richard Douthwaite
Abstract: Richard Douthwaite, economist and writer, co-founder of FEASTA, the Irish society for
the economics of sustainability, died in November 2011. His scientific work encompasses
a wealth of studies involving economic, political and social analysis focusing on the question
of economic growth and alternatives to it, showing possible paths to a sustainable future.