The Fetish of Economic Growth

Max-Neef reminds us that while measurement is essential, we must not be led to believe that only those things which can be measured have value.


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ABOUT MANFRED MAX-NEEF

Manfred Max-Neef is a Chilean economist widely respected for his work on international development. In 1981 he wrote the book for which he is best known, ‘From the Outside Looking in: Experiences in Barefoot Economics.’ It describes his experiences practising economics among the poor in South America. In that year he founded the Centre for Development Alternatives (CEPAUR). He is currently Rector of the Universidad Austral de Chile in Valdivia.

Manfred Max-Neef believes that economists are fixated with growth for growth’s sake. As a result, they overlook the qualitative values essential to human development. Whereas growth is quantitative, qualitative values leading to the development of human well-being and happiness are harder to measure but of equal importance. Max-Neef reminds us that while measurement is essential, we must not be led to believe that only those things which can be measured have value. The fragmentation philosophy that separates us needs to be replaced by a holistic philosophy of integration and inter-connectedness.

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Filmed: Geneva, Switzerland on 21 May 2006

Credits: Interviewer - Marcus Morrell, Camera and Editor - Marcus Morrell

Copyright © 2006 Big Picture TV