Ing. Ivan Klinec, Institute for Forecasting, Slovak Academy of Sciences, Bratislava
The search for new economic theories for a sustainable world is one of the preconditions of change of present patterns in economic life of the individual, the society and the whole civilisation. The whole present human civilisation is under pressure to change its activities toward sustainable development, toward support of sustainable living and toward the creation of a new sustainable world. In the last decades of the 20th century, we are witnesses of failure of old classic economic theories especially at the end of last decade, when the global crisis of human civilisation and the global economy is growing with high speed and the danger of destruction of human civilisation is interconnected with present economic theories and the international economic and financial institution as World Bank, International Monetary Fund and World Trade Organisation. Especially now, monetary theory is a huge source of destruction of economies and societies on the national and also global level. The last two decades of the 20th century were also characterised by an emerging number of new economic theories as the new economics (Paul Ekins, Hazel Henderson, Pat Conaty, Manfred Max-Neef, Ernst Schumacher); green economics (Sara Parkin); steady-state economics (Herman Daly, John Cobb); geonomics (Patrick Carson, Julia Moulden); bioeconomics (Nicholas Georgescu-Roegen); socioeconomics (Amitai Etzioni); regenerative economics (Paul Hawken); humanistic economics, real-life economics and many others. All these new economic theories are characterised by diversification of the view of economic reality, search for designing new economic theories based on the law of Nature and the Universe and common dialog or multilog in searching for ways from the present global crisis of mankind. Common for all these theories is also a holistic view of economic, social and civilisation reality. We are witnesses of an emerging holistic economic theory, which is created together by all new economic thinkers oriented toward sustainable development and a sustainable world. The basic characteristics of the emerging new holistic economic theory are following:
1. The view of the economy as an open subsystem and part of higher systems as are the society, Nature and the Universe (Henderson, Parkin, Georgescu-Roegen, Daly, Ekins, Goldsmith, Schumacher, Capra, Gore).
2. The view of the global world economy as one undivided whole, the view of this economy as implicit order and the view of economic development and the globalization process as holomovement, with using the theory of wholeness and implicit order, which was created by David Bohm.
3. The view of partial economic theories and economic theoretical schools as partial maps of economic reality, as fragmentary views of one undivided reality and the view of economics as one science connected from a great number and diversity of parcial economic theories, all of which have their own time, space, purpose and limits, and no economic theory is possible to be absolute in any time and any space.
4. The change of view of reversibility of economic processes and view of economic processes as irreversible with the focus on economic dynamics instead of economic statics.
5. The implementation of term and conception of entropy into economic theories with its relationship to the whole economy and society instead of using the term uncertainty only in relationship to decision making processes and management (Georgescu-Roegen).
The change of view of the role of information in economy in direction to
view it as in-formational and structure creating factor, which is creating a
new structure of economy,
society and civilization (Toffler, Naisbitt, Drucker, Davis, Davidson, Tapscott, Kelly).
7. The view of economy as a dissipate structure, which is dissipating energy, materials and information and creating a new structure of society and whole civilisation around the civilisation attractors in the form of economic productive factors as are soil, work, capital and information and which determining structure and profile of economy, society and civilisation.
8. The value reorientation of individuals, society and civilisation toward sustainable values and respect to Nature and to the laws of Nature and the Universe.
The view of the emerging global economy as the challenge and chance of
renewing the original significance of economics as the science about
householding and overcoming alienation of their original significance in the industrial
era, in global world economy man has to be housekeeper first and manager,
businessman and financier second. The design of holistic economic theory is at
a starting point and must be done by a great number and great diversity of
economic thinkers from the whole world from various countries, but the speed of
its creation is one of the main preconditions of changing the present direction
of humankind toward a sustainable world and overcoming the emerging global
Bohm, David: Wholeness and the Implicate Order. Routledge and Kegan Paul, London 1980
Bohm, David: Thought as a System. Routledge, London, New York 1995 Capra, Fritjof: The Turning Point. Science, Society and the Rising Culture. Flamingo, London 1982
Capra, Fritjof: Uncommon Wisdom. Conversation with remarkable people. Flamingo, London 1988
Daly, Herman: Steady-state economics. Earthscane Publications Ltd., London 1992
Daly, Herman, Cobb, John, B. Jr.: For the Common Good. Redirecting the Economy Toward Community, the Environment and a Sustainable Future. Beacon Press, Boston 1989
Ekins, Paul, Max-Neef, Manfred /editors/: Real-Life Economics. Understanding Wealth Creation. Rotledge London 1992
Gore, Albert: Earth in the Balance. Ecology and the Human Spirit. Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston 1992
Georgescu-Roegen, Nicholas: The Entropy Law and the Economic Process. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Masasachusetts 1971
Nicholas: Energy and Economic
Myths. Pergamon Press, New York
Hawken, Paul: Ecology of Commerce. A Declaration of Sustainability. Harper Collins, New York 1993
Hazel: Paradigms in Progress. Life
Beyond Economics. Knowledge Systems, Inc.,
Henderson, Hazel: Building a Win-Win World. Life Beyond Global Economic Warfare. Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc. San Francisco 1996
Klinec, Ivan: Global Economy, Global Thinking. Institute for Forecasting SAS, Bratislava 1996
Klinec, Ivan: Holistic Interpretation of the Present Economic Reality. Institute for Forecasting SAS, Bratislava 1995
Klinec, Ivan: Economics and Ecology on the Background of Holistic View of the World. In: Životné prostredie č.4/1998, Bratislava 1998
Naisbitt, John: Megatrends. Warner Books, New York 1984
Parkin, Sara: Green Futures. Agenda for the 21st Century. Fount, London 1991
Ilya, Stengers, Isabelle: Order out
of Chaos. Man´s New Dialogue with Nature.
Heinemann, London 1984
Schumacher, Ernst F.: Small is Beautiful. A Study of Economics as if People Matterd. Vintage, London 1993
Schumacher, Ernst F.: A Guide for the Perplexed. Harper and Row, New york 1977
Schumpeter, Joseph A.: The Theory of Economic Development. An Inquiry into Profits, Capital, Credit, Interest, and the Business Cycle. Transaction Publishers, New Brunswick, London 1993
Toffler, Alvin: The Third Wave. Bantam Books, New York 1990
Alvin: Powershift. Knowledge, Wealth
and Violence at the Edge of the 21st Century. Bantam Books, New York