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Currently Browsing: Justifying Simplicity

Enough, For Everyone, Forever

  Below is the introduction to Mark A. Burch’s final Simplicity Institute Report for the year, ending what has been a wonderfully prolific few months. The essay is called “Sufficiency: Enough, For Everyone, Forever,” and it is freely available in full here. I’d like to extend my gratitude to Mark for all his hard work, over many years, advancing the cause of mindful simplicity... read more

The Sufficiency Economy: Envisioning a Prosperous Way Down

Below I’ve posted the introduction to my new essay, “The Sufficiency Economy: Envisioning a Prosperous Way Down.” This essay, which I feel is the clearest expression of my views, summarises the critique of growth economics and then describes in some detail what I consider to be the most promising alternative model – ‘a sufficiency economy.’ The full essay can be read... read more

Simplicity, Sustainability, and Human Rights

Mark A. Burch has just published another fine Simplicity Institute Report, this time addressing the themes, “Simplicity, Sustainability, and Human Rights.” I’ve posted the introduction below and the full report is available here.  I don’t claim any professional credentials or special expertise with respect to human rights. My perspective is that of a layperson, not a jurist or human... read more

Radical Simplicity and the Middle-Class: Exploring the Lifestyle Implications of a ‘Great Disruption’

Below I have posted my new Simplicity Institute Report, “Radical Simplicity and the Middle-Class: Exploring the Lifestyle Implications of a ‘Great Disruption.’” The report has also been published with the Permaculture Research Institute of Australia and the PDF is available here. 1. Introduction How would the ordinary middle-class consumer – I should say middle-class citizen –... read more

Degrowth, Expensive Oil, and the New Economics of Energy

The PDF is available here:  “Degrowth, Expensive Oil, and the New Economics of Energy“ Our understandings and expectations of the world have been shaped by our experience of economic growth. The dynamic stability of that growth has habituated us to what is ‘normal.’ That normal must soon shatter. – David Korowicz  Samuel Alexander[1] 1. Preparing for Life after Growth In this post I... read more

David Holmgren Publishes Simplicity Institute Report: Retrofitting the Suburbs

I’m pleased to announce that David Holmgren, co-originator of the permaculture concept, has just published a Simplicity Institute Report, entitled “Retrofitting the Suburbs for the Energy Descent Future.” I’ve provided a short overview of Holmgren’s essay below, and the full report is available at the Simplicity Institute here.  Sometimes well-meaning ‘green’... read more

Resilience through Simplification: Revisiting Tainter’s Theory of Collapse

A society or other institution can be destroyed by the cost of sustaining itself. – Joseph Tainter I managed to write one final paper prior to the new semester beginning, this time on the subject of Joseph Tainter’s theory of complexity and collapse. The paper has just been published with the Permaculture Research Institute of Australia and will be also published in two parts on the Energy... read more

But Can’t Technology Solve the Problems?

Continuing the Simplicity Institute’s enquiry into questions of technology, Ted Trainer has just published a new report, entitled ‘But Can’t Technology Solve the Problems?’ I’ve posted the first few paragraphs below and the full report is available here. But Can’t Technology Solve the Problems?  by Ted Trainer The ‘limits to growth’ analysis argues that the pursuit... read more

Life After the Peak

The following short article has just appeared in this month’s edition of Issues magazine (Vol: 99, pp40-43). It is adapted from my much longer article, ‘Peak Oil, Energy Descent, and the Fate of Consumerism,’ which is available here. The PDF of the article below is available here. Evidence is mounting that the age of cheap energy – the age of cheap oil, in particular – is... read more

Ted Trainer and The Simpler Way (Review Essay)

I’m very pleased to announce that Ted Trainer has joined the Simplicity Institute, and in recognition of this important event I’ve spent the last week writing a review essay of his work, which I’ve posted below. Ted has been writing about The Simpler Way for many years,  and in coming weeks and months he will be publishing a series of essays on the Simplicity Institute website (which I... read more
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