Governing the Anthropocene - Technologies and transformations: Heat, greed and human need: Climate Change, Capitalism and Human Wellbeing

How can climate breakdown be averted without – at the least – worsening deprivation and inequality?

In this talk Ian will argue that the satisfaction of human needs – as opposed to wants – is the only viable measure for negotiating trade-offs between climate change and human wellbeing, now and in the future. A transition is proposed, moving from ‘green growth’ to ‘recomposing’ patterns of consumption in the rich world, cutting high-energy luxuries in favour of low-energy routes to meeting basic needs. This in turn can prepare the way if necessary for an economy that flourishes without growth.

Ian Gough is Visiting Professor in CASE (Centre for the Analysis of Social Exclusion) at the London School of Economics, an Associate of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment also at the LSE and Emeritus Professor at the University of Bath. He has recently published the book Heat, Greed and Human Need: Climate Change, Capitalism and Sustainable Wellbeing. His previous books include: The Political Economy of the Welfare State; A Theory of Human Need; and Wellbeing in Developing Countries.