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Postgrowth and Human Wellbeing

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Abstract

This chapter reviews the discussion about the relationship between postgrowth and wellbeing. After providing a brief overview of different wellbeing concepts and measurements, it presents and critically discusses the main arguments that have been made in the postgrowth literature regarding the capacity of postgrowth economies to maintain or even improve present levels of wellbeing. This involves a discussion about the concepts of wellbeing that have been applied in the debate so far, as well as a review of the evidence on the relationships between economic growth and contraction on the one hand and subjective and objective wellbeing outcomes on the other. The chapter argues that the concept of basic human needs deserves more attention in this debate as it is compatible with postgrowth frameworks.

Keywords

  • Subjective and objective wellbeing
  • Human needs
  • Capabilities
  • Adaptive preferences
  • Loss aversion

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Fig. 5.1

Source OECD Health Statistics

Fig. 5.2

Source OECD Inequality update 2016 http://www.oecd.org/social/inequality-and-poverty.htm

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Büchs, M., Koch, M. (2017). Postgrowth and Human Wellbeing. In: Postgrowth and Wellbeing. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-59903-8_5

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