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Blog Fish Guy Economic Reality Check

Every week we look for new and possibly interesting things to talk about or create with you. This week, while doing our research we came across a TED talk that we thought would stimulate thinking and hopefully some interesting conversations.

Tim Jackson is Professor of Sustainable Development and Director of the Research group on Lifestyles, Values and Environment. His research interests focus on understanding the social, psychological and structural dimensions of sustainable living. For over twenty years, he has been at the forefront of research and teaching in sustainability.Tim begins this compelling talk by suggesting we are in danger of “undermining hope” and says that we seem to have a kind of  “blind faith in our cleverness”.

Tim asks us to imagine a world in 2050 in which 9 billion people are living within our current economic model. He asks how “clever” would we need to be to do that and meet our carbon emission targets. He says we would need to produce a 130 fold improvement in carbon emissions. He goes on to ask if our economic system is even remotely capable of producing that kind of improvement. One of the things Tim suggests is that we are trapped in a system that encourages us to “Spend money we don’t have, to buy things we don’t need, to create impressions that won’t last, on people we don’t care about”.

Tim also says that the system is completely at odds with who we are as human beings and that we are too busy to do things that make economic sense. He goes on to suggest an approach that might give us “the freedom to become fully human”.

We hope you enjoy the talk and the ensuing conversation as much as we have.

click here to watch see Tim’s talk

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