Category Archives: Economics

Taking decolonisation beyond Eurocentrism

Ingrid Harvold Kvangraven writes: With the publication of Orientalism in 1978, Edward Said would become one of the most influential scholars of our era. The book transformed the study of the history of the modern world, as it offered insights into how racist discourses created and maintained European empires. As much for his political activities,… Read More »

How many billionaires are there, anyway?

Willy Staley writes: In 1981, Malcolm Forbes, the eccentric and fabulously wealthy magazine publisher, came to his editors with a request: Could they pull together a special issue about the 400 richest Americans? The idea was inspired by Caroline Schermerhorn Astor, the doyenne of Gilded Age New York, who regularly hosted the city’s high society… Read More »

What if jobs are not the solution but the problem?

James Livingston writes: Work means everything to us Americans. For centuries – since, say, 1650 – we’ve believed that it builds character (punctuality, initiative, honesty, self-discipline, and so forth). We’ve also believed that the market in labour, where we go to find work, has been relatively efficient in allocating opportunities and incomes. And we’ve believed… Read More »

Can Germany function without Russian natural gas?

The Guardian reports: The Ukraine crisis has plunged Germany into an intense debate about how it will heat its homes and power its industry in future, summed up in the short question: can Europe’s largest economy function without Vladimir Putin’s gas? The Green federal economics minister, Robert Habeck, answered with a decisive “yes it can”,… Read More »

Waste is central, not peripheral, to everything we design, make and do

Justin McGuirk writes: The opposition between ‘nature’ and ‘culture’ is problematic for many reasons, but there’s one that we rarely discuss. The ‘nature vs culture’ dualism leaves out an entire domain that properly belongs to neither: the world of waste. The mountains of waste that we produce every year, the torrents of polluting effluent, the… Read More »

Thoreau’s economics: the truly precious costs precious little

John Kaag and Jonathan van Belle write: The word ‘economy’ evolved from the Greek root οἶκος. ‘Oikos’ had three interrelated senses in ancient Greece: the family, the family’s land, and the family’s home. These three, taken interchangeably, constituted the first or fundamental political unit in the ancient Greek world, especially in the minds of Greece’s… Read More »

America needs you to buy less junk

Amanda Mull writes: Lately, news stories about the supply chain tend to start in similar ways. The reader is dropped into an American container port, maybe in Long Beach, California, or Savannah, Georgia, full to bursting with trailer-size steel boxes loaded with toilet paper and exercise bikes and future Christmas presents. Some of the containers… Read More »

World’s growth cools and the rich-poor divide widens

The New York Times reports: As the world economy struggles to find its footing, the resurgence of the coronavirus and supply chain chokeholds threaten to hold back the global recovery’s momentum, a closely watched report warned on Tuesday. The overall growth rate will remain near 6 percent this year, a historically high level after a… Read More »