Nobel ideas

- THE STATESMAN

Oct 23, 2018-

Not even a person of average intellect—far removed from the rarefied world of economists—will find it hard to understand why the Nobel committee chose Paul Romer and William Nordhaus for the Prize in economics. No human escapes the effects of nature ravaged, as the inexorable pursuit of growth, sometimes even pleasures of life, devastate everything natural and pristine; to wit, eco-tourists trashing the regions that they visit in their keenness to be one with nature. Corporate greed and subterfuge around planned environmental depredations continue to shock one’s sensibilities and the Nobel laureates, very simply put, seek to incorporate sustainability, climate change concerns and technological innovations into the tools for analysing economic growth. Arguably, economists cannot address the rapacious mindset that embraces bottom-line concerns as it strategises to enrich balance sheets. But surely research creating countervailing processes to extract “genuine” business value—that embraces mankind—from the humungous, globally-interconnected, production machinery, should be factored in for reckoning growth.  Why corporate action propelling unsustainable lifestyle changes, courtesy chemical agro-inputs, processed food, exposure to radioactivity and innumerable others, using innovation to enslave humankind and destroy the earth should not be integral to assessments of economic cost while estimating growth is the abiding mystery of the 20th and 21st centuries.

Published: 23-10-2018 07:44

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