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Biophysical Context of the Economy: Implications for Economics

  • Fraser Murison Smith
Chapter

Abstract

This chapter outlines a biophysical context for the economy, describing how natural science understands the structure and dynamics of the natural world, as the context for the economy. The exponential increase in the material scale of the economy has set in motion a coevolution with Earth’s natural systems. The perspective upon the economy is from the outside looking in, so as to help the social-science reader understand how and why natural scientists perceive the relationship between human activity and natural processes, and to provide a rationale for an economics of a crowded planet. That rationale begins with the material scale of the economy as a bounding condition for individual preference. It is predicated critically upon certain propositions about individual motivations and norms under planetary limitations.

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© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fraser Murison Smith
    • 1
  1. 1.San RafaelUSA

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