Supply Shock: Economic Growth at the Crossroads and the Steady State Solution

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Overview

Politicians, economists, and Wall Street would have us believe that limitless economic expansion is the Holy Grail, and that there is no conflict between growing the economy and protecting the environment. Supply Shock debunks these widely accepted myths and demonstrates that we are in fact navigating the end of the era of economic growth, and that the only sustainable alternative is the development of a steady state economy.

Starting with a refreshingly accessible, ...

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Supply Shock: Economic Growth at the Crossroads and the Steady State Solution

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Overview

Politicians, economists, and Wall Street would have us believe that limitless economic expansion is the Holy Grail, and that there is no conflict between growing the economy and protecting the environment. Supply Shock debunks these widely accepted myths and demonstrates that we are in fact navigating the end of the era of economic growth, and that the only sustainable alternative is the development of a steady state economy.

Starting with a refreshingly accessible, comprehensive critique of economic growth, the author engages readers in an enormous topic that affects everyone in every country. Publishers Weekly favorably compared Brian Czech to Carl Sagan for popularizing their difficult subjects; Supply Shock shows why.

Czech presents a compelling alternative to growth based on keen scientific, economic, and political insights including:

  • The "trophic theory of money"
  • The overlooked source of technological progress that prevents us from reconciling growth and environmental protection
  • Bold yet practical policies for establishing a steady state economy

Supply Shock leaves no doubt that the biggest idea of the twentieth century—economic growth—has become the biggest problem of the twenty-first. Required reading for anyone concerned about the world our children and grandchildren will inherit, this landmark work lays a solid foundation for a new economic model, perhaps in time for preventing global catastrophes; certainly in time for lessening the damages.

Brian Czech is the founder of Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy (CASSE), the leading organization promoting the transition from unsustainable growth to a new economic paradigm.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

It may be premature to call this book a masterpiece, but it's evident that Czech has mastered the art of melding science, economics, policy and politics in one readable piece. Supply Shock belongs in the classroom, boardroom, town halls and policy circles. It belongs in the hands of all those who care, as Czech might say, "about the grandkids."
---Herman Daly, Professor Emeritus, University of Maryland, School of Public Policy; author of Steady State Economics; Lifetime Achievement Award winner, National Council for Science and the Environment from the Foreword

Brian Czech has used a remarkable combination of education and experience to build a solid reputation as an innovative thinker. His newest book, Supply Shock, is an adventure in learning. Czech's vision of "steady statesmanship" is impressive and convincing, and this book easily qualifies as one of the key manuals for those who care about the world and its inhabitants.
---Lynn Greenwalt, former director, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

An old economic world is dying, and a new economic world is being born. Brian Czech is one of the midwives of this new economic world.
---Governor Richard D. Lamm

Supply Shock clearly describes the heart of what ails us--a zombie-like addiction to economic growth everywhere at all costs. Brian Czech brilliantly dissects the economic theories, models, and mindsets that are diminishing the human prospect while calling it 'progress'. . . . King Midas would have understood the point, as we will someday."
---David W. Orr is Paul Sears Distinguished Professor of Environmental Studies and Politics and Senior Adviser to the President, Oberlin College; author of seven books; Lyndhurst Prize winner

Supply Shock brings together the keen observations of a skilled biologist with a deep understanding of our failing economic system. Brian Czech has come up with the major economic rethinking needed to prevent cascading collapses of human societies and the rest of the species on the planet.
---Brent Blackwelder, Past President, Friends of the Earth; Founding President, American Rivers

This is a brave book that raises questions we all need to ask and try to answer. With remarkable clarity, Czech proposes the evolution of a revolution, thinking and feeling and working our way toward a fair, sustainable, constructive social order in America and all around the world.
---Neil Patterson, president, Neil Patterson Productions; co-founder, Norton Science publishing

Brian Czech has dedicated his entire professional life to the study of wildlife conservation, environmental protection, and human society. Supply Shock is the culmination of this thinking, and should be read by leaders as well as upcoming professionals in natural resource conservation and environmental management. Bold leadership – the kind needed for conservation of the world’s natural resources and habitats – can be enhanced by Czech's vision of steady statesmanship.
---Paul R. Krausman, Boone and Crockett Professor of Wildlife Conservation, University of Montana, and past president, The Wildlife Society

This well-written and comprehensive volume is a great resource for questioning “economic growth” and moving towards a new paradigm for the earth’s future.
---Doug La Follette, Secretary of State, Wisconsin

Brian Czech marries economics, biology and political science in a brilliant account of why we need to abandon growth and build a new governance system. There is no sociable alternative to the steady state economy.
---Lorenzo Fioramonti is Jean Monnet Chair in Regional Integration and Governance Studies at the University of Pretoria; Senior Fellow at the Centre for Social Investment, University of Heidelberg; author of several books on international political economy including Gross Domestic Problem: The Politics Behind the World’s Most Powerful Number.

The practice of conservation biology has a palpably futile feeling when economic growth is the summum bonum. Supply Shock provides an antidote. All who are serious about the big picture of biodiversity conservation should read this book. It will change your idea of what the future can be, and how to create that future.
---Paul Beier, president, Society for Conservation Biology, and Regents' Professor, School of Forestry, Northern Arizona University

In Supply Shock, Brian Czech graphically shows how the growth-based status quo is destroying the ecological basis of human existence and eloquently describes an alternative path to true economic maturity.
---Bill Rees, author of Our Ecological Footprint, Professor Emeritus of Human Ecology and Ecological Economics, University of British Columbia, and co-winner of the 2012 Boulding Prize in Ecological Economics

As Brian Czech lucidly explains, it's time for our economy to start acting like a responsible adult in a world of limits. This book reeks of sanity: read it!
---Richard Heinberg, author, The End of Growth

Dr. Czech seems to be one of the few economists with the courage to stand tall and point out the scientific reality that perpetual economic growth is impossible.
---Jack Davis, retired CIA Executive Officer

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780865717442
  • Publisher: New Society Publishers
  • Publication date: 5/28/2013
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 972,979
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.20 (d)

Meet the Author


Brian Czech is the founder of Center for the Advancement of the Steady State Economy (CASSE), the leading organization promoting the transition from unsustainable growth to a new economic paradigm. CASSE was named the Best Green Think Tank of 2011 by Treehugger. Brian’s background is in ecology, conservation biology, and economics, and together with colleagues from several professional scientific societies, he crafted a position statement on economic growth that has been signed by nearly 10,000 individuals and endorsed by hundreds of progressive organizations.

Herman Daly was a senior economist with the World Bank in the 1980’s and 90’s. He has served on the boards of directors of numerous environmental organizations, and is a cofounder and associate editor of the journal Ecological Economics. He is the author of many articles about economic development as it relates to population, resources and the environment, as well as numerous books, including Toward a Steady-State Economy, Beyond Growth, and Steady-State Economics.

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 30, 2014

    I really enjoyed this book. I've read books on the notion of the

    I really enjoyed this book. I've read books on the notion of the steady state in the past, and I felt they were either overly simplistic or not good reads for the uninitiated. This book begins with an overview of our economy's history and then provides an in-depth discussion of the steady state that works well for those at any stage of familiarity with the idea. This book made me feel more comfortable discussing the steady state in class, where my students engage with the concept of the commons and alternate economies. It also provides interesting bits that are able to slip into casual conversation and open up new conversations about economics with people who may not want to read a whole book about it. I really valued what this book offered to my understanding of economics and the steady state.

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