System Change not Climate Change – what to ask of a website


Climate change is a symptom of our broken economic system. As Naomi Klein said, “The economy is at war with the climate.” Climate scientists have laid out the facts for decades now and politicians have failed to respond because they are afraid the economy might not grow. And the growth imperative is structurally built into the system. If the economy doesn’t grow the alternative is not equilibrium. It is collapse.

In order to catch up with new economics after four years away working on climate change, I have been doing some google searches on new economics, a new economy, the next system, regenerative economics, green economics, sustainable economics, ecological economics, post-carbon institute and real world economics.

And these are the questions I ask myself:
1. What is the underlying philosophy of these sites?
2. What questions don’t they ask? Do they come close to asking another question and then back away?
3. Are they really understanding that the economy is a subset of the environment and that Nature bats last?
4. Are they broadening their brief out so widely that they cannot really claim to be a new economics site?
5. Do they give solutions which are at national level only?
6. Do they start from conventional economics and just try and tweak it?
7. Are they green washing? Talking about green growth or sustainable growth? Alarm bells here.
8. Do they use systems thinking, understanding that a tweak here will affect something there?
9. Any chance they could use the word biomimicry in their language to invent a new economy?
10. Are they also looking at climate justice, a new system that brings more social justice?

My first observation is that there are a great many men involved and precious few women involved with some of the major sites. Evonomics would be the first I would criticise. Only 12% of contributors are women.

I looked for people I used to know