Markets, Productivity, and Happiness in a Historical Perspective

Introducing 'A History of Ecological Economic Thought' (Routledge, 2023)

Vianna Franco Marco P., Konrad Lorenz Institute for Evolution and Cognition Research
Missemer Antoine, CNRS, CIRED Paris

From a historical perspective, ecological economics can be considered as the latest manifestation of a more long-lasting intellectual movement – ecological economic thought (EET) – that started, at least, at the Renaissance, and which has consisted in various forms of interlinkages between the natural and social sciences for the sake of better understanding human-nature relations. Based on a forthcoming book entitled ‘A History of Ecological Economic Thought’ (Routledge, 2023), we briefly discuss the historiographical challenges associated to the writing of this history, present an overview of its contents, and then move on to reviewing some structuring debates that have transcended single episodes in the history of EET (i.e. theory of value, role of capitalism, etc.). These overarching topics appear as foundational for the identity of this extended body of thought, which also means that discussing them may provide fresh perspectives for research in contemporary ecological economics.

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Keywords: sustainability; ecological economics; interdisciplinarity

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