The end of economic growth? A contracting threshold hypothesis

Lawn, Philip and Clarke, Matthew 2010, The end of economic growth? A contracting threshold hypothesis, Ecological economics, vol. 69, no. 11, pp. 2213-2223, doi: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2010.06.007.

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Title The end of economic growth? A contracting threshold hypothesis
Author(s) Lawn, Philip
Clarke, Matthew
Journal name Ecological economics
Volume number 69
Issue number 11
Start page 2213
End page 2223
Total pages 11
Publisher Elsevier BV
Place of publication Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Publication date 2010-09-15
ISSN 0921-8009
Keyword(s) GPI
economic growth
threshold hypothesis
Asia-Pacific region
Summary This paper argues that GDP growth in both developed and developing countries has associated costs that can outweigh the benefits and thus reduce sustainable well-being. This conclusion is based upon the findings of empirical applications of the Genuine Progress Indicator (GPI) to a range of countries in the Asia-Pacific region. The studies conducted on seven Asia-Pacific countries indicate that, in the case of five of the seven nations, more recent GDP growth has reduced the sustainable well-being experienced by the average citizen residing within them. Moreover, the threshold point at which the costs of GDP growth outweigh the benefits appears to be contracting (i.e., occurring at a much lower per capita level of GDP). This paper therefore introduces a new contracting threshold hypothesis: as the economies of the Asia-Pacific region and the world collectively expand in a globalised economic environment, there is a contraction over time in the threshold level of per capita GDP. As a consequence, the threshold point confronting growth late-comers (i.e., developing countries) occurs at a much lower level of sustainable welfare than what wealthy nations currently enjoy. The consequences of this for developing countries are clearly significant and require a new approach to economic development.
Language eng
DOI 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2010.06.007
Field of Research 160505 Economic Development Policy
Socio Economic Objective 940302 International Aid and Development
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2010, Elsevier B. V.
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