Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered ePUB

Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered ePUB
  • Paperback
  • 352 pages
  • Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered
  • Ernst F. Schumacher
  • 16 June 2017
  • 0061997765

Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered➲ Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered Read ➺ Author Ernst F. Schumacher – Essayreview.co.uk Nothing less than a full scale assault on conventional economic wisdom Newsweek One the most influential books published since World War II The Times Literary SupplementHailed as an eco bible by Time Nothing less than a full scale assault Beautiful: Economics eBook ↠ on conventional economic wisdom Newsweek One themost influential books published since World War II The Times Literary SupplementHailed as an eco bible by Time magazine, EF Schumacher s riveting, richly researched statement on sustainability has become relevant and vital with each year since its initial groundbreaking publication during theenergy crisis A landmark statement against Small Is MOBI :Á bigger is better industrialism, Schumacher s Small Is Beautiful paved the way for twenty first century books on environmentalism and economics, like Jeffrey Sachs s The End of Poverty, Paul Hawken s Natural Capitalism, Mohammad Yunis s Banker to the Poor, and Bill McKibben s Deep Economy This timely reissue offers a crucial message for the modern world struggling to balance economic Is Beautiful: Economics PDF Î growth with the human costs of globalization.


About the Author: Ernst F. Schumacher

Ernst Friedrich Fritz Schumacher was an internationally Beautiful: Economics eBook ↠ influential economic thinker, statistician and economist in Britain, serving as Chief Economic Advisor to the UK National Coal Board for two decades.


10 thoughts on “Small Is Beautiful: Economics as if People Mattered

  1. says:

    The conception of economics as a free standing, autonomous discipline and sphere of activity, and even as an end unto itself, is one of the costliest fallacies of our age It is precisely this fallacy that this book dismantles That economic growth should be subordinated to broader human, cultural, political and ecological concerns, and that it should serve human growth by being intelligently harnessed to fuel community development projects rather than having politics hijacked by economics by c The conception of economics as a free standing, autonomous discipline and sphere of activity, and even as an end unto itself, is one of the costliest fallacies of our age It is precisely this fallacy that this book dismantles That economic growth should be subordinated to broader human, cultural, political and ecological concerns, and that it should serve human growth by being intelligently harnessed to fuel community development projects rather than having politics hijacked by economics by claiming economic growth is the end all of politics and society , is an idea we badly need to grasp at a time in which corporations are gaining unprecedented legal rights and political power.The underlying issue here is, as he rightly points out, our culturally patterned inability read, unwillingness to understand issues in their true context Anyone who has ever tried to think logically and objectively about the matter will realize that economics is a subset of ecology Who da thunk it Human economic activities occur within a context of limited natural resources, and therefore economic growth cannot mushroom unto eternity Ignoring said context means undercutting the basis on which we stand Action can only be appropriately deliberated within a comprehensive and profound enough understanding of its appropriate relational context You don t need references to quaint ethical precepts that d embarrass any self respecting, hard nosed economist in order to appreciate this as a cold, self evident fact revealed by the unbiased use of reason He rightly points out that we fail to introduce the true variables limited resources into our computations due to a perspective schewed by flawed and overly narrow preconceptions regarding which kinds of considerations are relevant This is another illustration of one of the costliest pitfalls of human reason the results of any act of reasoning you perform are determined by the perspectival limitations that ensue from your posited starting points You posit the variables that you consider relevant, and reason calculates for you the best way to focalize the picture you wish to see Unfortunately, what you don t wish to see is at least as important as what you do Omitting an object from one s field of vision does not decrease its reality The lapse of reasoning on this issue is borderline pathological, and far from being our chief adaptive organ, human reason is proving disastruously ill matched to reality a point well elaborated also in Ornstein and Ehrlich s New World, New Mind The issue could easily be rectified by paradigmatically enforcing modes of thought and analysis that place problems in their proper, large scale context, instead of myopically focusing on issues in terms of the teeniest short term spotlight we can consider them in You don t need some transformation of consciousness for that You just need to actually use reason as it is meant to be used on the basis of the most comprehensive perspective available That this is still largely considered fringe material shows that not many steps have been taken to increasing the adaptiveness of our overriding paradigm

  2. says:

    It has been thirty years since I read this book for the first time I had my original copy, so it was interesting to see what I d highlighted and noted at that time In most cases, I agree with the note, but it was especially interesting to see what the differences were.I ve studied a lot of economics since that time, and it surprises me that so little of Schumacher s prejudices against the religion of economics have taken hold Economics is so one dimensional profit on a micro scale and GNP It has been thirty years since I read this book for the first time I had my original copy, so it was interesting to see what I d highlighted and noted at that time In most cases, I agree with the note, but it was especially interesting to see what the differences were.I ve studied a lot of economics since that time, and it surprises me that so little of Schumacher s prejudices against the religion of economics have taken hold Economics is so one dimensional profit on a micro scale and GNP on a macro scale , and if you argue to introduce other variables finite resources , you lose all credibility with the public and are thrown into the spacey category.So many of the questions he raised about sustainability are so relevant today, and still don t get discussed.We were in deep doodoo when he wrote this and we are in deep doodoo now He was right then and he is right now So why can t we learn

  3. says:

    I baised, my economic philosophy is very much in agreement with Schumacher.Schumacher takes economics and makes it human, ethical, and easy to understand Shumacher s perspective is economics as a set of tools to assess and answer questions rather than economics as the answer itself He highlights the shortcomings of statistical models i.e., externalities such as quality of life, environmental degradation, social impacts, etc are not assessed.The response to Small is Beautiful was the creati I baised, my economic philosophy is very much in agreement with Schumacher.Schumacher takes economics and makes it human, ethical, and easy to understand Shumacher s perspective is economics as a set of tools to assess and answer questions rather than economics as the answer itself He highlights the shortcomings of statistical models i.e., externalities such as quality of life, environmental degradation, social impacts, etc are not assessed.The response to Small is Beautiful was the creation of a humanistic economics movement This movement suggests that deeming something economic does not mean it is the automatic correct course of action, rather the first discussion of economics should be followed by consideration of whether the action is ethical, ecological, etc Regarding globalization Schumaker asked how much further growth will be possible, since infinate growth in a finite environment is an obvious impossibility The basic tenent of Small is Beautiful is that people should come before economics, that one s workplace life should be dignified and meaningful first, efficient second, and that nature is priceless

  4. says:

    Wisdom demands a new orientation of science and technology toward the organic, the gentle, the elegant and beautiful Quote of 1970s wisdom1 17 20 Reading David Brooks editorial today bringing back memories of my enthusiasm for small scale economics The NYT opinion writer making a case for Big is Beautiful NYT article that describes changes in our small town by big companies Thus, the core problem is not cap Wisdom demands a new orientation of science and technology toward the organic, the gentle, the elegant and beautiful Quote of 1970s wisdom1 17 20 Reading David Brooks editorial today bringing back memories of my enthusiasm for small scale economics The NYT opinion writer making a case for Big is Beautiful NYT article that describes changes in our small town by big companies Thus, the core problem is not capitalists exploiting their workers it s the rise of productivity inequality It s the companies and individuals who don t have the skills to take advantage of new technologies Brooks brings back days when I was inclined to Schumacher s vision, by showing bigger is better When walking with dogs unleashed exploring the juniper and sage landscape with no buildings in sight, where Apple has its security fenced monstrous presence Knew in 1963, when home on leave to Mother s new home in Central Oregon, that I wanted to root myself in the region A small place in the sunshine with nature all around Where there are now nine gigantic clouds consuming extraordinary amounts of electricity Apple and Facebook buildings, including five Facebook structures that have changed my winter sky sunset profile

  5. says:

    I ve never been all that interested in macroeconomics, but intrigued by the title, I gave Small is Beautiful by E.F Schumacher a try It was a long read, but a good one, and I culled interesting insights from every chapter Schumacher s visionary simplicity with the largest elements of society were radical 30 years ago, but incredibly relevant, then and today.A fair portion of the book is spent emphasizing the way our economy is unsustainable and how quickly we use up our natural resources Sch I ve never been all that interested in macroeconomics, but intrigued by the title, I gave Small is Beautiful by E.F Schumacher a try It was a long read, but a good one, and I culled interesting insights from every chapter Schumacher s visionary simplicity with the largest elements of society were radical 30 years ago, but incredibly relevant, then and today.A fair portion of the book is spent emphasizing the way our economy is unsustainable and how quickly we use up our natural resources Schumacher also explains how little consideration was put towards pollution until it was too late In the folksy way of a 60s radical, he speaks about the importance of the land in a way that is neither hollow nor flippant, but full of wisdom and grace The whole point is to determine what constitutes progress What is progress What should aid to the third world look like These questions are where Schumacher particularly shines, explaining a need for intermediate technologies to improve the quality of life for everyone and not just investments which only improve the quality of life for the highest classes and leave the lower ones evendestitute No system or machinery or economic doctrine or theory stands on its own feet it is invariably built on a metaphysical foundation, that is to say, upon man s basic outlook on life, its meaning and its purpose I have talked about the religion of economics, the idol worship of material possessions, of consumption and the so called standard of living, and the fateful propensity that rejoices in the fact that what were luxuries to our fathers have become necessities for us When I read quotes like that one, I couldn t help but think about what the economic implications of Christian thought are, and how few Americans I know, least of all me, embody them

  6. says:

    This book was written by EF Schumacher, a German economist As an Economics graduate at a conservative liberal arts university in the US South, I enjoyed the philosophy and ideas put forward in Small is Beautiful Trust me, this was not on my reading listI am fascinated with the idea that capitalism has become the new religion for the US West and that envy greed the primary morals The book discusses how capitalistic systems push for growth to solve problems, including poverty, unemployment This book was written by EF Schumacher, a German economist As an Economics graduate at a conservative liberal arts university in the US South, I enjoyed the philosophy and ideas put forward in Small is Beautiful Trust me, this was not on my reading listI am fascinated with the idea that capitalism has become the new religion for the US West and that envy greed the primary morals The book discusses how capitalistic systems push for growth to solve problems, including poverty, unemployment and standard of living It also shows how capitalistic systems fall short of solving these problems, because it 1 assumes that infinite growth is possible within a finite world sustainable econ point and 2 that the complete focus on increased profits, coupled with new technologies, has led to a decline in the self fulfillment of mankind in relation to his her work The book argues that the community loses when individuals cannot connect to the work they do with their hands mind, when people cannot connect what they buy from where it came and how it was produced Schumacher reminds us that there are spiritual, moral and ecological losses in a capitalistic system All is not lost, but there needs to be awareness of these losses and adjustments made He argues for small businesses and the utilization of intermediate technologies so that instead of mass production we can have production by the masses This book has inspired me to readalong this subject

  7. says:

    This is a tough one for me to rate There were parts of it that I found quite insightful, parts that seemed very dated, parts that felt like a big letdown.Some thoughts EFS writes clearly about the problem of the hedonic treadmill though he doesn t use that term for materialist capitalism There are poor societies which have too little, but where is the rich society that says Halt We have enough There is none He advocates a third way between laissez faire capitalism and state soci This is a tough one for me to rate There were parts of it that I found quite insightful, parts that seemed very dated, parts that felt like a big letdown.Some thoughts EFS writes clearly about the problem of the hedonic treadmill though he doesn t use that term for materialist capitalism There are poor societies which have too little, but where is the rich society that says Halt We have enough There is none He advocates a third way between laissez faire capitalism and state socialism, which is not just a compromise between the two Rather, it is a form of organization that I might call a true ownership society , with ownership being defined not by abstract property rights but by operational reality that is, people should be able to own things when they can truly exercise personal ownership so owning a neighborhood business makes sense, but owning a multinational company or even worse, a share of one does not He doesn t use this terminology, but I think his advocacy of small scale is closely tied to the ethics of caring it is natural to want to care for things one owns, but this is only possible at the human scale on which care can operate I appreciated his discussion of convergent and divergent problems Briefly, a convergent problem is one where there is a solution that can be communicated to others, who can then carry it out an example being a math or engineering problem while a divergent problem is one where this is not the case, such as a social or political problem Much of modernity, EFS argues, is dedicated to the attempt to reduce divergent problems to convergent problems for instance, in political organization or education Not only is this impossible, says EFS, but it actually represents a moral horror imagine what a world would be like in which convergent solutions had been found to problems of human relationships a living death, as many sci fi novels will tell you The way to deal with divergent problems is not to solve them but to live them out I find this distinction to be pretty useful Despite approaching it critically due to the New Agey title, I actually liked the essay Buddhist Economics , and I wish he had called it something different as there is little in it that is specific to Buddhism I think it was just a hot topic in 1973 It s really just about the role of virtue in grounding economic organization The main focus is on the logic of consumption EFS notes that standard economic thought understands an increase in consumption as always and everywhere good On the other hand, nearly all traditional virtue systems agree that pleonexia is bad and this is a case where even classical Greek and Christian understandings of virtue agree EFS argues that the main measure of interest is happiness per unit of consumption, and that the right way to maximize this is in ways that minimize the denominator while holding the numerator constant In this essay he doesn t much go into specific ways of doing that, so one could read it as insufferably preachy Just be content with less But I think that is an unfair reading I think the argument finds a very powerful application, for example, in the trend away from public goods toward private goods in America moving from using the municipal pool to everyone having a pool in their backyard One could argue that this slightly increased individual utility though I d be skeptical , but certainly it represents a vast decrease in the happiness consumption ratio.I could go on but I should probably wrap it up So, here s my main problem with this book Despite his avowed love for small scale organization, EFS ultimately seems not to have the full courage of his convictions He ends up advocating thatappropriate scale be brought about through a somewhat baroque large scale technocratic method, involving forced equity participation by the state, Social Councils , special courts, etc Throughout the book, whenever EFS was arguing that the status quo was unjust or destructive, I found myself agreeing with him but wondering what to do about it So when he finally came to describe his prescription in this way, I felt pretty let down I think that anyone making this type of critique of modern society needs to have the courage advocate actions that can be taken at the scale of individuals or communities, without recourse to the state s monopoly on violence This, of course, is the hard part, but having just read Dorothy Day I know that people have managed it perhaps not in ways that are glamorous, but I think that is part of the point

  8. says:

    Oof, tried to read this but found it dated and preachy Some of Schumacher s fundamental ideas are wonderful and important, but I can t read books that make blanket statements about the iniquity and moral vacuity of modern society how things were better before the 19th 20th 21st century.Also, if you re writing for an audience of non conformists in the seventies and you re NOT a feminist, shame on you Schumacher says that most women shouldn t have to work, yet claims that meaningful work is Oof, tried to read this but found it dated and preachy Some of Schumacher s fundamental ideas are wonderful and important, but I can t read books that make blanket statements about the iniquity and moral vacuity of modern society how things were better before the 19th 20th 21st century.Also, if you re writing for an audience of non conformists in the seventies and you re NOT a feminist, shame on you Schumacher says that most women shouldn t have to work, yet claims that meaningful work is a human right Um

  9. says:

    One of Cambridge Sustainability s Top 50 Books for Sustainability, as voted for by our alumni network of over 3,000 senior leaders from around the world To find out , click here.Small is Beautiful is a collection of essays outlining economist EF Schumacher s philosophy on modern economic, ecological and spiritual thinking Its strength lies in Schumacher s ability to elegantly and intelligently question many assumptions of modern economics, highlighting some of the fallacies What makes his One of Cambridge Sustainability s Top 50 Books for Sustainability, as voted for by our alumni network of over 3,000 senior leaders from around the world To find out , click here.Small is Beautiful is a collection of essays outlining economist EF Schumacher s philosophy on modern economic, ecological and spiritual thinking Its strength lies in Schumacher s ability to elegantly and intelligently question many assumptions of modern economics, highlighting some of the fallacies What makes his work all theremarkable is that his starting point was indeed economics, rather than environmentalism or social activism.Part of his thinking about technology comes from Schumacher s vision of what he calls Buddhist economics Here, he is calling for a new philosophy, which values people above production and values labour above outputs Work, he claims, should be a dignified and creative process to be encouraged, not a factor of production to be minimised or replaced through mechanisation he also emphasises the Buddhist values of non attachment to material goods and respect for all living things

  10. says:

    E.F Schumacher was an economist, And he wrote Small is Beautiful to talk about the economicproblems we have in the world this book was published back in the late 70s, and it has been updatedrecently the basic idea of Small is Beautiful is that our economies in the world are big, big businesses, have become too big And they are not sustainable any we re destroying the planet Earth because we are consuming too much Our economies are too big our population, too big our companies E.F Schumacher was an economist, And he wrote Small is Beautiful to talk about the economicproblems we have in the world this book was published back in the late 70s, and it has been updatedrecently the basic idea of Small is Beautiful is that our economies in the world are big, big businesses, have become too big And they are not sustainable any we re destroying the planet Earth because we are consuming too much Our economies are too big our population, too big our companies, too big.Everything has grown too large and his solution, as you might guess, is that we needsmaller economies,local economies,green economies So he was writingabout this long before Al Gore and An Inconvenient Truth and a lot of other things whichare quite common right now But he was writing about these things way back in the 70s.What is the most basic problem Economically our wrong living consists primarily in systematicallycultivating greed and envy and thus building up a vast array oftotally unnecessary wants It is the sin of greed that has deliveredus over into the power of the machine If greed were not themaster of modern man how could it be that the frenzy ofconsumerism does not abate at higher standards of living and that it is precisely the richest societies which pursue their economicadvantage with the greatest ruthlessness How could we explainthe almost universal refusal on the part of the rulers of the richsocieties to work towards the humanization of work, soul destroying, meaningless, mechanical, monotonous, moronic workthat is an insult to human nature These are the facts which areneither denied nor acknowledged but are met with an unbreakablesilence Because to deny them would be too obviously absurd andto acknowledge them would condemn the central preoccupation ofmodern society as a crime against humanity by A.J

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