New Book: Sustainable Capitalism: A Matter of Common Sense

Posted by on October 7, 2005

Sustainable Capitalism: A Matter of Common Sense by John E. Ikerd

“For years, John Ikerd’s writings and speeches have provided precious insights into the economics of this nation’s food system, exploding the myth that factory farms are economically imperative. In this brilliant book, he makes a powerful case for a new capitalistic economy: one that is environmentally sound, socially just, and economically sustainable.”
? Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

* Addresses the philosophical and scientific roots of sustainability
* Examines neglected ethical and moral aspects of capitalist economic theory
* Advocates a new sustainable paradigm for all living organizations, businesses, economics, and societies

Over the past half-century, capitalist economics has deviated from its original ethical and social purpose. Recently, capitalism has mutated into an amoral quest for economic growth at any cost. A relentless pursuit of profits and the “bottom line” poses a constant threat to civil society and the natural environment. The sustainability, indeed survival, of earth and the life upon it, is at risk under this brand of unfettered capitalism.

In order to maintain a new economics of sustainability, social and ethical values must be reintegrated into capitalist economics, thus restoring a sense of balance into the economic system that ensures that communities the world over will benefit and thrive. Sustainable Capitalism: A Matter of Common Sense suggests how capitalism can become a vehicle for these ends.

Both a penetrating critique of capitalism and an exploration of its vast and untapped potential for maximizing human welfare, Sustainable Capitalism: A Matter of Common Sense is written for a wide audience, including students and professors whose fields and interests embrace development, economics, ecology, sociology, and cultural anthropology. Those concerned with the future of our planet and the continued viability of global capitalism will regard this book as a vital addition to their libraries.

“John Ikerd has shown an uncanny ability to address the very questions which need to be answered-now. This is a must-read book for students, teachers, and policymakers striving for a framework to ensure economic sustainability and intergenerational equity.” ?E. Ann Clark, University of Guelph

Dr. John Ikerd spent the first half of his thirty-year academic career as a traditional free-market, neoclassical economist. He served on the faculties of four major state universities during his career: North Carolina State University, Oklahoma State University, the University of Georgia, and the University of Missouri. Growing concerns for the lack of ecological, social, and economic sustainability of American agriculture during the 1980s led to broader concerns for the lack of sustainability for American society in general. As an economist, Dr. Ikerd eventually came to understand that growing threats to ecological and social sustainability are rooted in the neoclassical paradigm of economic development, which is inherently extractive and exploitative, and thus, is not sustainable. Dr. Ikerd spent the last half of his academic career and much of his time since retirement developing and testing the concepts and principles of an alternative development paradigm, the economics of sustainability, which are elucidated in this book.

Sustainable Capitalism: A Matter of Common Sense, published by Kumarian Press, August 2005, Paper $21.95 (1-56549-206-4)

To order visit

Or call 800-289-2664, or fax 860-243-2867.

Bulk discounts, examination and review copies available. Contact Jacqueline Bush, Head of Marketing,

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