My most recent YES! column identified 2020 as the defining year of a defining decade for humanity. The scientific data suggest it is our last opportunity to get in place the necessary measures to meet essential carbon emission reduction targets. This immediate and nonnegotiable imperative for human wellbeing, even survival, is a consequence of profound economic failure that traces to deeply flawed economic theory.
The global awakening to this failure and the related imperative for deep change creates an epic opportunity to transition to a new civilization dedicated to securing the wellbeing of people and planet. Successful navigation of this transition will required replacing the deeply flawed economics that has shaped human relationships with one another and Earth since the mid-20th century with a 21st century economics built on a foundation of 21st century science, the wisdom of indigenous peoples, and the moral principles of the world’s religions.
2019: Learning and Connecting
For me, 2019 was a year of learning and connecting as I renewed and deepened relationships developed over the past 50 years. Defining experiences included meetings with thought leaders in China and South Africa and engagements with the Club of Rome (CoR); the Parliament of the World’s Religions; the Academy of Management; organizations of the Claremont EcoCiv alliance; a Fordham University based Vatican initiative to transform management and economics education in the world’s Jesuit universities; the Wellbeing Economy Alliance (WEALL) that includes members shaping government economic policies in New Zealand, Iceland, and Scotland; a radical feminist initiative called An Economy of Our Own; and the Global Tapestry of Alternatives.
Each advanced my thinking and engagement while presenting opportunities to connect and shape the thinking of key players in the unfolding effort to save humanity from itself. What I learned from Club of Rome discussions and my visits to China and South Africa bears special mention.