‘Barefoot economics’

Was the intriguing summary of the ideas of a Chilean economist, Manfred Max-Neef, who I discover, sadly died in 2019.

Our government could – should – learn a lot from these – particularly his fundamental value principle:

The principles, you know, of an economics which should be are based in five postulates and one fundamental value principle.

One, the economy is to serve the people and not the people to serve the economy.

Two, development is about people and not about objects.

Three, growth is not the same as development, and development does not necessarily require growth.

Four, no economy is possible in the absence of ecosystem services.

Five, the economy is a subsystem of a larger finite system, the biosphere, hence permanent growth is impossible.

And the fundamental value to sustain a new economy should be that no economic interest, under no circumstance, can be above the reverence of life.

So he was on the case that the economy should be looking after us and not us looking after the economy, long before me…

There is a short compilation interview below, which is where I first encountered him: