Instead of focusing on increasing economic growth, shouldn’t the focus be on long-term sustainability and durability?

This is the question raised and addressed by Kenneth Rogoff, Professor of Economics and Public Policy at Harvard University,  formerly chief economist at the IMF:

Cambridge, United Kingdom – ‘Modern macroeconomics often seems to treat rapid and stable economic growth as the be-all and end-all of policy. That message is echoed in political debates, central-bank boardrooms and front-page headlines. But does it really make sense to take growth as the main social objective in perpetuity, as economics textbooks implicitly assume?

Certainly, many critiques of standard economic statistics have argued for broader measures of national welfare, such as life expectancy at birth, literacy, etc. Such appraisals include the United Nations Human Development Report, and, more recently, the French-sponsored Commission on the Measurement of Economic Performance and Social Progress, led by the economists Joseph Stiglitz, Amartya Sen and Jean-Paul Fitoussi…

…There is a certain absurdity to the obsession with maximising long-term average income growth in perpetuity, to the neglect of other risks and considerations.’

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