June 1, 2016 Paula

Mainstream economics are not delivering what humanity needs

Innaxis at the XIII International Colloquium of the World Academy of Arts and Science (WAAS)

Lisbon 11th -13th May 2016

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WAAS members where invited during a three day conference at the Lisbon School of Economics and Management to discuss “Post 2008 Global Dynamics and Structural Changes: Economic, Political and Eco-Societal Transitions”.

The international financial crisis in 2008 sparked a plea for systemic paradigm shift regarding the orientation of policies of economic management. The request amongst decision makers and international organizations for profound changes in our economic system have unfortunately only been very short-lived.

Instead a “business as usual” agenda has been put in place driven by unquestioned mainstream economic theories.

However the present interconnected crises of unemployment, growing inequality and environmental destruction (just to name some of them) show that these challenges are not correctly addressed by the current dominant framework of economic thought.

In light of these developments, the aim of the meeting was to discuss the future of “Economics” as a science, its inherent shortfalls and usefulness.

The participants of the colloquium examined the changes since the period in which most prevalent economic concepts were formulated and assessed their relevance to the radical changes that have transformed economic activity since then.

Carlos Alvarez Pereira President of Innaxis, presented at the Colloquia « Towards a Society of Living » the vision of a new work programme currently under development at Innaxis. In his presentation he explored the shortcomings of our current understanding of economics and the gridlocks that prevent us from transforming our societies. In addition, he stressed that the transformation paths have to go beyond narratives based on technology-driven solutions, which are currently, in times of rapid digitalization, very appealing but insufficient or even misleading. He proposed pathways for reformulating economics as part of a larger, complex societal-scale system which addresses human needs in harmony with nature.

During the meeting WAAS members decided to produce a new academic curriculum for students, based on alternative economic theories including human-centered, value-based, ecologically sustainable economic thinking.

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