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Essays on Frugal Abundance (3 and 4 of 4)

The Simplicity Institute has published the final two ‘Essays on Frugal Abundance’ by Serge Latouche. The two essays are available at the links below: Essays on Frugal Abundance (3 of 4) Essays on Frugal Abundance (4 of... read more

The New Economics of Oil

I’ve just published an “Issues” paper with the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute, called “The New Economics of Oil”. I’ve posted an abstract below and the full paper is available here. “This paper seeks to show that oil issues remain at the centre of global challenges facing humanity, despite recent claims of oil abundance, and that the challenges are only... read more

Essays on Frugal Abundance (2 of 4) by Serge Latouche

The Simplicity Institute has just published the second of Serge Latouche’s “Essays on Frugal Abundance.” I have posted a short excerpt below, and the full essay is available here. In these essays, Latouche responds to common misunderstandings and controversies around the notion of degrowth. Degrowth means unemployment For the advocates of growth, or in fact for ordinary people in modern... read more

Post-Growth Economics: A Paradigm Shift in Progress

I’ve recently published the second in my series of working papers with the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute. This new paper is called, ‘Post-Growth Economics: A Paradigm Shift in Progress’. I’ve posted the the introduction below and the full paper is available here. Post-Growth Economics: A Paradigm Shift in Progress Samuel Alexander 1. INTRODUCTION ‘Going for growth is... read more

Essays on Frugal Abundance (1 of 4) by Serge Latouche

Serge Latouche is Europe’s preeminent degrowth scholar – an original, deep, and provocative thinker. The Simplicity Institute is pleased to be publishing four “Essays on Frugal Abundance” by Professor Latouche, in which he considers and responds to various misunderstandings and controversies surrounding the notion of degrowth. Part 1 of this series on Frugal Abundance is available... read more

Our Beautiful Cob Cabin: Building with Mud

In recent months I’ve posted about the ecovillage project I’m helping develop out near Moe (see here). It continues to be an exciting, enriching, and evolving project. To complement the Earthship we built in December, we’ve just completed (almost) a beautiful new cob cabin – see pictures below. The foundations and walls of this natural building were built during six days of a... read more

New Book Review of “Entropia”

A new review of my book Entropia: Life beyond Industrial Civilisation has appeared in the journal, Environmental Values. The review is written by an academic from the Netherlands, Dr Marius de Geus, who is the world’s leading scholar on ecological utopias. He has written several (highly recommended) books, including Ecological Utopias: Envisioning the Sustainable Society and The End of... read more

A Critique of Techno-Optimism: Efficiency without Sufficiency is Lost

I have been doing some work recently with the Melbourne Sustainable Society Institute, and have just published the first of a number of working papers, entitled “A Critique of Techno-Optimism: Efficiency without Sufficiency is Lost”. An abstract is posted below and the full paper is available here. ABSTRACT: “Technological optimists believe that humanity will be able to solve environmental problems... read more

Simple Living in the City

The Sustainable Living Festival is coming up again in Melbourne (Feb 8-23). I’ve posted some details below about some simplicity related events, as well as a call out for anyone who might be able to help volunteer for an hour or two on one of the days. Sustainable Living Festival stall – volunteers needed The Simplicity Institute and Greg Foyster (author of a book about simple living, Changing... read more

Book Reviews of “The Hidden Door” by Mark Burch

Below I’ve posted two book reviews of Mark A. Burch’s latest book, The Hidden Door: Mindful Sufficiency as an Alternative to Extinction. Book Review: The Hidden Door: Mindful Sufficiency as an Alternative to Extinction, by Mark A. Burch Reviewed by: Rodney Kueneman, Associate Professor, Sociology, University of Manitoba. Reading and reflecting on this book provides an opportunity for a... read more

A Limits to Growth Critique of the Radical Left

I am pleased to announce the publication of Ted Trainer’s insightful new Simplicity Institute Report, “A Limits to Growth Critique of the Radical Left: The Need to Embrace the Simpler Way”. Not only does this essay present a powerful challenge to the strategies typically embraced by the radical left, Trainer prefaces his substantive analysis with a pithy restatement of the ‘limits to growth’... read more

Natural Building Workshop – March 2014

There’s a two week natural building workshop coming up this March, an hour and a half out of Melbourne. For those interested, details below: Agari Farm and Mud Mob Natural Building Collective are running a 2 week natural building and healing workshop in March aiming to teach people to build low cost homes with natural and reclaimed materials (Earthbag, Cob, Wattle and Daub, Light Earth, Reciprocal... read more

Voluntary Simplicity and the Steady State Economy

Mark A. Burch of the Simplicity Institute has just published this fine article in The Daly News (CASSE). Voluntary simplicity is most basically characterized by the practices of mindfulness and material sufficiency. Through bringing mindfulness to our daily lives, we seek the maximum of well-being achievable through the minimum of material consumption. Well-being applies to all life forms on Earth, not... read more

Radical Emissions Planning: Kevin Anderson

I’ve just watched these two clips below from Kevin Anderson, one of the most outspoken climate scientists on the scene today. As you will see, he does not shy away from radical implications of the numbers. Avoiding dangerous climate change, he concludes, requires degrowth in the wealthiest parts of the world, a conclusion other climate scientists (or any policy makers) have dared not acknowledge. But... read more

The Deep Green Alternative: Debating Strategies of Transition

I am pleased to begin this new year with the publication of a new Simplicity Institute Report, entitled ‘The Deep Green Alternative: Debating Strategies of Transition,’ co-written by myself (Samuel Alexander) and Jonathan Rutherford. This report is freely available here, and a brief overview of the report is posted below: In this paper we do not seek to defend, as such, the ‘deep green’... read more
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