He classifies the fundamental human needs as: subsistence, protection, affection, understanding, participation, recreation(in the sense of leisure, time to reflect, or idleness), creation, identity and freedom. Needs are also defined according to the existential categories of being, having, doing and interacting, and from these dimensions, a 36 cell matrix is developed which can be filled with examples of satisfiers for those needs. (full text, scroll down).
He says: “There are two separate languages now – the language of economics and the language of ecology, and they do not converge. The language of economics is attractive, and remains so, because it is politically appealing. It offers promises. It is precise, authoritative, aesthetically pleasing. Policy-makers apply the models, and if they don’t work there is a tendency to conclude that it is reality that is playing tricks. The assumption is not that the models are wrong but that they must be applied with greater rigour… While the many deficiencies and limitations of the theory that supports the old paradigm must be overcome (mechanistic interpretations and inadequate indicators of well-being, among others), a theoretical body for the new paradigm must still be constructed”. (text).
Manfred Max-Neef – Chile
Read: The Barefoot Economist, transcript of the Broadcast on Saturday 9/03/2002.
Read: The Natural Step’s fourth Condition for Sustainability and Manfred Max-Neef’s basic Needs Analysis.
Read: The beat of a different drummer, same in spanish.
Read: Report: Transdisciplinarity in Progress.
Read: Economic growth versus genuine progress, an obsession with GDP growth could backfire.
Contemplate: Human Needs Graphic;
Read: Guest Lecture on Sustainable Wealth Creation.
Manfred Max-Neef (b. October 26, 1932 in Valparaiso, Chile) is a Chilean economist and ecologist. Max-Neef started his career as a teacher of economics at the University of California, Berkeley in the early 1960s. He then travelled through Latin America and the United States, as a visiting Professor in various universities, as well as living with and researching the poor. In 1981, he wrote the book From the Outside Looking In: Experiences in Barefoot Economics. It is a narrative of his travels among poor communities in South America, describing his approach to ‘economics as if people matter.’ In the same year, he founded the organization CEPAUR (Centre for Development Alternatives). Max-Neef won the Swedish government’s Right Livelihood Award in 1983, known as the “Alternative Nobel Prize”, for his work in poverty stricken areas of developing countries. Max-Neef ran for President of Chile as an independent in the 1993 election. He achieved 4th place, with 5.55% of the vote. In 1993, he was appointed rector of the Universidad Austral de Chile in Valdivia. He served in that position for eight years.
He says also: “The CELCO’s closing down would be a great message to investors. It would imply that if things are not well done, there would be consequences. In this way Chile would change its speech, from sustainability to a real process of sustainable development” … “Even though it is true that plant add value to wood, they also affect other productions and economic activities, because they do not proceed in the right way”, Max-Neef remarked. “In Finland or in Sweden, there are non –contaminating plants. At first it was said that it would be the same here, but reality showed otherwise”. (full text).
Memberships: European Academy of Sciences and Arts, The Club of Rome, New York Academy of Sciences, Leopold Kohr Academy of Salzburg. Awards: In addition to the Right Livelihood Award, University Awards of Highest Honour: Soka University, Japan. Doctor Honoris Causa, University of Jordan, Jordan. National Prize for the Promotion and Defense of Human Rights, Chile.
Book: ‘From the Outside Looking In, Experiences in Barefoot Economics’, published 1981 by the Dag Hammarskjöld Foundation, Sweden. It describes his experiences as an economist attempting to practise ‘economics as if people matter’ among the poor in South America. (text).