A sustainable what?

Work-related material.​

This section is about my work. In particular, the economics of growth, innovation and sustainability. What defines a sustainable economy?


I apologise if I sound a bit wonkish in places, but it's hard to get motivated about the role of policy without some discussion of what it means to make people happy. There is little that is technical here, and I hope most the arguments are intuitive. ​


It should quickly become apparent that the major barriers to attaining a better and more sustainable living are not technological or economic, they are psychological, cultural, institutional and behavioural. Questions are of course raised about valuing people in faraway places or faraway times and what constitutes the good life? Is welfare identical to happiness? Are there other attributes we care about? How do we value rights, capabilities, freedom and opportunities? What about love and doing the 'right thing'? Sometimes it feels like life is one problem after another, but why is it so hard to have fun in between and laugh at the small stuff? Especially when most of us dread the absence of life? I hope to discuss some of these questions as well as the dryer behavioural stuff, because they are central to the economic discussion.

And, just in case all that seems a little bit too quizzical, here's the late Ivor Cutler.