ESG Reports

Rethinking Growth

Mariko Kawaguch Cheif Analyst,Daiwa Institute of Research Ltd.

  • Since the collapse of Lehman Brothers, eco-businesses have emerged as a promising new growth driver, as exemplified by the Green New Deal. "Growth is good" has become the mantra of our times. Yet, when we see the environmental damage that ever-increasing human activity (a byproduct of economic growth) has wrought upon the planet, we should ask ourselves whether "green growth" is, in fact, a contradiction in terms. Given the environmental limits of our planet, it has become evident that growth as we know it is no longer feasible. Tracing the course of economic history charted by mankind, we note it has only been since the dawn of the Industrial Revolution-a mere blink of the eye in human terms-that economic development has become the objective of human activity. This report, through a brief overview of economic history, will show that economic growth has not always been our universal goal. Moreover, it will shine light on new approaches to economic thinking, including Bhutan's experiment in gross national happiness, which seeks progress and prosperity through happiness rather than through material wealth. We will also cover recent reports on the future of prosperity and social progress commissioned by the UK and France.


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