In introducing his welcome new series on economic alternatives, Aditya Chakrabortty rightly castigates those who continue to promote the failed economic ideas of the past (It’s time to take on the zombies, 17 January). But he underestimates the extent to which a vibrant network of thinktanks, academics, campaigning and community organisations are now “rethinking capitalism” in pursuit of a society fit for the future.
Here at IPPR we are working on everything from new approaches to macroeconomic policy to the proper taxation of wealth, from proposals for a “digital commons” to devolved economic governance, from increasing worker ownership to a new framework for environmental policy.
It would be great to see the Guardian report on the growing economic paradigm shift now under way.
Director, IPPR, and chair, IPPR Commission on Economic Justice
Aditya Chakrabortty is right in his description of how the “zombie elites” are ruining British economy and society. The Economy for the Common Good movement was founded in 2010 in the wake of the global banking crisis and in response to the manifest failures of neoliberal policies in a globalised world.
It offers an inspiring vision of a market economy in which success is measured by a company’s contribution to the common good and not simply on short-term financial value. It also offers practical tools to enable any organisation to evaluate its impact in this way. There are now hundreds of companies worldwide that produce their own Common Good Balance Sheets. Our future must surely lie with the progressive instincts and talents of ordinary people – and not the toxic prescriptions of the living dead!
Director, Economy for the Common Good UK CIC
Good for Aditya Chakrabortty for pursuing real alternatives to the failed economics that dominates public debate. One thing to add: the evidence of our democratic forum and focus group studies here at the University of Kent shows much gloom at falling living standards and despair at the failure of government to do much about it. There is one positive thing. Most people argue strongly for better education, more training and decent cheap childcare to give those who didn’t go to Eton a chance to earn a decent wage. That’s something that could be a way forward – and the kind of government intervention that people would support.
Professor of social policy, University of Kent
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