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Democratic Planning for Degrowth

Demonstration against the EPR, Lyon, March 17, 2007, Place Bellecour

Manifestation contre l'EPR, Lyon, 17 mars 2007, place Bellecour. Banderole du Parti pour la Décroissance. [Demonstration against the EPR, Lyon, March 17, 2007, Place Bellecour. Banner of the Party for Degrowth.] © Yann Forget / Wikimedia Commons, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link.

Matthias Schmelzer is a postdoctoral researcher at the Friedrich Schiller University Jena, Germany, and coauthor of The Future Is Degrowth (Verso, 2022). Elena Hofferberth is a visiting researcher at the University of Lausanne, Switzerland. She holds a PhD in economics from the University of Leeds.

We live in truly historic times. According to the recent UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Synthesis Report, there is a “rapidly closing window of opportunity” to secure a livable and sustainable future for all. To prevent a catastrophic “hothouse Earth” scenario of extreme warming and sea-level rise, “rapid and far-reaching transitions across all sectors and systems are necessary.” There is mounting evidence that, for rich countries, to achieve the necessary much faster mitigation pathways requires abandoning aggregate economic growth.

Despite all efforts at decarbonization in high-income countries, which are often trumpeted as showing that GDP can be decoupled from emissions, the scale and speed of emission reductions is nowhere near what would be necessary. Indeed, scientific evidence from recent years shows that if the countries of the Global North continue to pursue “green growth,” it is extremely unlikely that greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced at the rate and scale needed to avoid climate collapse. Let us take Europe as an example: While the shift to lower-carbon energy between 1990 and 2020 has enabled a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions by 34 percent (not accounting for trade), these reductions of less than 1 percent per year on average are far from what is needed to curb climate breakdown, which are estimated to be around 11 percent reductions per year for Germany, or 6 percent for the European Union, according to the German Advisory Council on the Environment. Other analysis points to the need for even steeper emission reductions.1

In fact, an increasingly robust body of scientific literature shows that green growth cannot be sustainable—but also, that a different form of organizing society is possible.2 To achieve sustainability, so-called developed countries need to abandon the objective of GDP growth and scale down less necessary and destructive forms of production to reduce energy and material use. We need a planned and selective contraction of economic activity aimed at increasing well-being and equality.3 Or, as recently argued in this journal, we need “ecosocialist degrowth.”4 Degrowth is founded on and justified by a solid critique of market instruments, the optimistic reliance on price mechanisms and private-sector solutions, which are central to so-called “green economy” approaches. Indeed, the lack of social-ecological planning and the reliance on socially unjust and often ineffective market instruments is precisely what has led us into this mess in the first place.

Degrowth formulates an alternative to the capitalist market that seeks to escape the capitalist growth imperative, which continuously impedes mitigation efforts by driving rising energy demand.5 Degrowth is built around a fundamental democratization of the economy and collective “self-limitation” (per André Gorz), or the setting of collectively defined societal boundaries and entitlements that define the conditions for a good life for all.6 All of this is going to require democratic planning. In fact, collective self-limitation can be understood as the strongest expression of democratic, societal autonomy, manifested in social liberation from the pervasive “heteronomous” logic of accumulation. It is the drive to accumulation that compels capitalist societies to pursue continuous expansion and that prevents adherence to democratically determined collective rules. Degrowth is an expression of societal freedom or autonomy, in the sense of an act of collective self-government, thus resisting “the functional regulation of conduct according to given principles, such as the so-called law of the market or the mantra of austerity and growth.”7

So, how might planning beyond growth look? Degrowth does not have to reinvent the wheel. It can build on ongoing, productive debates about ecological planning, participatory economies, and economic democracy. These topics have been extensively studied in the fields of geography, environmental management, and industrial engineering, and have been a key focus in economic and socialist literature. Currently, there is a resurgence of interest in economic planning as a postcapitalist project.8 Most of these planning discussions, as well as related debates on digitalization platform communism, have largely neglected ecological questions, the issue of growth or degrowth, and limits in general.9 Fortunately, there are some notable exceptions in the ecosocialist tradition, as well as recent efforts to revive democratic socialist planning in response to present ecological crises.10

Ecological planning for degrowth can be thought of as the democratic deliberation of both ecological limits and social needs, or of planning what in heterodox economic thought has become known as “‘the donut.’” This means that society—based on scientific evidence and public debate—democratically decides how to organize the process of social provisioning and how to avoid transgressing planetary boundaries. After all, while both planetary boundaries and social needs are often understood as objective scientific concepts, they can only become politically effective if they result from societal decision-making processes.11

Ecological planning beyond growth can take various forms. Ultimately, it could converge around multilevel, fractally integrated, non-market-mediated and subsidiary planning institutions that coordinate the local with society-wide and global institutions, as we have argued in a recent paper.12 But degrowth is not only a proposal for a full-fledged postcapitalist economy, but centrally a proposal for transformation, not only conceptualizing the goal, but also the path from where we are today. Degrowth thus discusses how to transform existing institutions through radical reforms that create growth independencies and improve sustainability and justice. Its radical policy proposals can be interpreted as using planning tools for a social-ecological transformation of industrial societies that start within markets, through the state, and on local or national levels, but that continuously push back against competitive market forces and hierarchical states, and will eventually have to transform global institutions.

Degrowth policies, we argue, offer a variety of key entry points for ecological planning beyond growth, as they conceptualize radical change starting from existing institutions. This approach is similar to what Gorz has called “non-reformist reforms,” or Rosa Luxemburg’s “revolutionary Realpolitik.” We highlight five sets of such radical degrowth policy areas that could form an integral part of ecosocial planning, transitioning to a postgrowth economy beyond capitalism.

(1) Selective flourishing and downscaling of production: The changes necessary to achieve a just, low-carbon transition are far-reaching and complex. The most obvious case in point, from a degrowth perspective, is the question of expansion and contraction. A degrowth transformation means that “creative destruction” (per Joseph Schumpeter) and related expansion—or, to put it differently, the phasing out and simultaneous expansion of different sectors, technologies, resource-uses, or economic activities—would no longer be left to the market, competition, and prices. Most importantly, rapid mitigation demands active reduction and phasing out of fossil fuel production and use based on a binding and scientifically determined schedule that takes remaining carbon budgets into account.

Yet it is not just fossil fuels that must be dealt with—fast mitigation in rich countries also requires phasing out other globalized, profit-oriented, unsustainable industrial economic sectors that do not serve the common good, while at the same time improving and expanding activities that ensure human flourishing within ecological limits, such as all aspects of care, renewable energy sources, regenerative agriculture, low-carbon public transport, and so on. Economic coordination and planning are central to achieve this. Social activity that does not advance human well-being, such as “bullshit” and “batshit” jobs, the arms industry and the military, advertising, lobbying, planned obsolescence, fast fashion, border security, and large parts of the financial industry, will have to be scaled down. The same goes for any economic activity that cannot be restructured socioecologically, such as a large part of motorized individual transport (above all in cities), air transport, and globalized trade, as well as industrial agriculture and industrial animal farming. To ensure the affected workers (and communities) are at the center of this process, just transitions should involve processes of conversion of firms and industries, adequate retraining of workers, and early retirement schemes. Besides sector-specific arrangements, degrowth strives for a more just distribution of work at the societal level, including both commodified and uncommodified work. This will have to involve decided processes that consider the multiple existing inequities along the lines of gender, race and class, among others.13

Instead of relying on the market and hoping that green alternatives will eventually outcompete these harmful activities, degrowth proposes a wide range of political measures that aim at actively pushing these shifts. Policies to effectuate phase-out and downscaling include caps on resource use, moratoria, ecological tax reform, or even expropriations, and they will have to result in processes of deaccumulation. The implementation of absolute limits on greenhouse gas emissions, resource extraction, energy use, and biodiversity loss is a defining feature of degrowth, particularly when compared to other sustainability strategies. Public provisioning, direct government financing, and preferential tax treatment are measures to ensure improvement and expansion of essential and desirable goods and services. The immense speed and scale of necessary transformations warrants the continuing exploration of suitable measures and instruments, including progressive industrial policy and more comprehensive forms of macroeconomic coordination.14 To address the challenge of selective investment and divestment, degrowth advocates for monetary and financial reform to increase public spending power and limit the power of private finance. This could involve stronger monetary-fiscal coordination or sovereign money creation, and higher (and differential) reserve requirements or direct credit regulations.15 These proposals acknowledge that money creation and credit allocation shape the economy in qualitative and quantitative terms. Their social-ecological reorientation and democratization is therefore essential to achieve universal need satisfaction within planetary boundaries.

(2) Democratizing the economy: The aim of taking decisions over the expansion and decline of sectors and activities out of the capitalist market makes alternative forms of economic governance and coordination necessary. Degrowth requires deliberating collectively about and planning societies’ economic life based on multiple relevant aspects. It requires a strengthening of democratic and participatory forms of decision-making and planning at regional, national, and global levels. Absolute caps on emissions, for example, will need to be set and implemented at a global scale and broken down to regional and local levels, as well as to various economic sectors and specific need satisfiers. While currently entirely built within an economic growth framework, postgrowth integrated assessment models could play a key role in helping societies to democratically determine among the various future pathways possible.16 Defining and enforcing collectively defined self-limitations on resource consumption and emissions makes decisions concerning how to best allocate the remaining resource funds necessary. These decisions must include the deliberation of priorities concerning the types of goods and services to be provided, and the organization of the associated production and distribution channels. For example, considering the need for mobility requires decisions on the comparative significance of public and private transportation; the role of air, land, rail, and water transportation; the type of engines used; and how individuals and organizations will be able access to them.

Democratization is also necessary because the concentrated power of capital leads to unjust and unsustainable outcomes. Capital invests in what is most profitable, not necessarily what is socially necessary.17 Not only are fossil fuels more profitable than renewables, but cars and sport utility vehicles are more profitable than public transit, industrial monoculture is more profitable than regenerative, organic agriculture, fast fashion and disposable consumer goods are more profitable than long-lasting, repairable, and high-quality products. Of course, if the long-term societal costs or, as economists argue, the social and environmental externalities were considered, things would look differently, and renewable energies are fast becoming cheaper. But as we currently experience in the high-inflation environment, driven by rising energy prices, a profit-inflation spiral, and record-breaking profits, fossil fuel investments continue, while investments in renewable energies are still too slow. Waiting for private finance to invest in what is necessary for a sustainable future or incentivizing it through schemes of “green de-risking” will be too slow, so governments need to step in and to organize the necessary finance and production directly.18 More generally, many of the sustainable economic activities needed to build a resilient future—in particular given the challenges of dealing with the results of catastrophic climate crisis and biodiversity breakdown—promise little or no profits: rewilding, natural carbon drawdown, and caring for the people affected by disasters are just a few examples.

In contrast to relying on private investments to drive the sustainable economy, degrowth advocates for placing the economy at the center of conscious, political, and democratic decisions. This involves empowering people—such as the workers in a factory, the neighbors of a farm, the users of a community-owned power plant, or the care recipients in retirement homes—to make key decisions. Seeing economic decisions as political problems requires overcoming the idea of a universal yardstick to measure all activities (whether that is GDP, money, or any other indicator), or the hope of delegating efficient production to algorithms (even though they might be extremely useful as tools). The democratization of the economy involves various dimensions, from resources to organizations, with collective management replacing private ownership and governance. Winding down one of the most powerful sectors of the global economy that has proven over decades its ability to use disinformation campaigns to deceive the public and to capture political processes, most recently even the UN climate negotiations, requires taking the fossil fuel industry under public and democratic control.19 This would allow us not only to ensure a just transition that protects the income of the workers in this industry, but also prevent price chaos, to ration and direct the energy during the transition phase to where it is needed most.

Indeed, studies have repeatedly shown that the oil and gas industry has already invested in producing more oil and gas than the world can afford to burn to limit global warming to 1.5°C—making some forms of expropriation or enforced losses on these stranded assets inevitable.20 While nationalizations might play a role, the decommodification, democratization, and communalization of energy production is more important, both for ramping down fossil fuels and for building up renewables by repurposing existing public utilities, retraining workers, and focusing production away from price-mediated world markets toward regional needs. One example of this is the expansion of the commons, where self-organization and management of resources, goods, or territories is based on the needs of those involved—a prominent example being Wikipedia, which provides democratic governance of information and knowledge, enabling its use on a nonprofit basis. Democratizing the economy also involves various forms of workplace democracy, which are prominent in the hundreds of cooperatives of the solidarity economy around the world, combining these with consumer democracy and society-wide forms of economic deliberation. Sustainability depends on social movements and labor unions collectively pushing back against the irrational power of fossil capital and organizing economic life around needs within limits.

(3) Planning social provisioning and equality: This is at the core of degrowth. Because capitalist markets organize production around what is profitable, the outcomes are highly irrational, producing wealth and private luxury for some, while at the same time creating misery and shortages for many. The production of all the wealth that economic growth has produced is highly unevenly distributed—according to the World Inequality Report, of all the additional wealth accumulated between 1995 and 2021, the top 1 percent captured 38 percent, whereas the bottom 50 percent captured just 2 percent of it.21 Even in rich countries, many people lack appropriate housing, cannot afford health care, and struggle with precarious work to make ends meet. In the United States, for example, with one of the most expensive health care systems globally, life expectancy is at its lowest in twenty-five years, the lack of access to good health care affecting in particular poor and marginalized and people who are Black, Indigenous, and/or people of color.22 Given the amount of wealth in the world, these are artificial scarcities. To end this, degrowth advocates the needs-based and sufficiency-oriented provisioning of essential goods and services, such as health care, housing, energy, and education for all. Different schemes exist for how this could be achieved.

Universal basic services envisions democratic and participatory processes that link local control with national coordination. Power over the organization of provisioning is to be devolved to the largest possible degree. Governments could play a role to “ensure equality of access; to set and enforce standards; to collect and invest funds; and to coordinate functions across sectors to maximize social, environmental and economic outcomes.”23 In particular, in the coming age of extinction, social provisioning must be extended to new forms of disaster relief to provide rapid medical aid, housing, food, water, and energy supply for those effected by floods, fires, droughts, storms, heatwaves, or pandemics. Combining democratically planned relief through a refunding and strengthening of these vital systems along the lines of what Nancy Fraser called the “politics of care,” with support for autonomous and spontaneous community efforts from the ground is essential.24 The more that disasters shape our lives, the more the relative ability of capitalist markets or democratic planning to organize relief will become a touchstone of the superiority of any system.

Studies show that if organized rationally, it is possible to provide decent material living to the entire global population at a much lower energy use that would be compatible with staying below 1.5°C increase in global temperature—including food, shelter, water, clothing, education, health care, mobility, and communications. To do so, however, requires unprecedented reductions in income and energy inequalities—and for this, societal inequality will have to be drastically reduced, and very fast, at a rate more than double that observed in the so-called golden age of capitalism.25 Considerations of equity and justice also concerns the fair sharing of work in society, public jobs guarantees, working-time reduction, and a redistribution of work. All of these are measures to realize this goal and establish economic security.

To achieve ecological justice beyond expansion, degrowth not only demands secure provisioning, income, and work for all, but also focuses on the opposite: redistribution aimed at taxing the rich out of existence, reappropriation, and caps on maximum reductions in income and wealth disparity. As Thomas Piketty, Yannick Oswald, Joel Milward-Hopkins, and others argue, curtailing the wealth of the rich might be among the most effective levers to reducing emissions.26 A recent study found that at current trends, the emissions of the world’s millionaires alone would deplete 72 percent of the remaining carbon budget for staying within the 1.5°C limit.27 The demand for maximum income and wealth, a key component in the political repertoire of the degrowth spectrum, can be thought of as capping incomes at two, five, or ten times the “basic income” of society—or, during a transition phase, at x times the minimum income in a specific business or sector. In addition, degrowth also advocates fundamental changes to the way private ownership structures society. These include taxation of inheritances, since these stabilize inequalities and class hierarchies over generations. Curtailing the license to pollute for the rich—the only social group within Europe whose carbon footprint expanded over the last decades—is central. Scaling down private jets, yachts, cruises, large mansions, and the production of positional goods are not only steps that by reducing aggregate energy use make fast decarbonization much easier, but they are also preconditions to making society-wide sustainability changes that involve sufficiency acceptable. So, degrowth advances policies for collectively defined minima and maxima for rights of access to societally available resources, energy, and output—democratically determined “consumption corridors” built around notions of global environmental justice and well-being.28

(4) Planning technological development: Technological development in a degrowth society cannot be market-oriented or driven by capitalist competition or military interests, but instead should be fundamentally needs-oriented. For Global North countries in the twenty-first century, this requires a radical change in the form and direction of the future development of society’s productive forces, including both different technical models and changed ownership structures: as long as the primacy of economic efficiency, rather than criteria of sustainability and utility, dominates design processes and investments in technical infrastructures, this transformation will not succeed. To aid this transformation, the concept of convivial technology has been developed based on Ivan Illich’s work, which consists of five core values: connectedness, accessibility, adaptability, bio-interaction, and appropriateness.29 These dimensions, we argue, could be central for determining democratically and then plan accordingly the future development of productive forces.

To begin with, connectedness asks in what way a technology shapes the relationships between people, both in terms of its production and use or infrastructure. Ecological planning should determine how technologies and infrastructures can be based on globally just supply chains, including the resources they need for production and running, and how these could best shape societies and modes of relating to each other according to the determined overall goals. Accessibility asks where, by whom, and under what circumstances a technology can be (further) developed and used. From the perspective of degrowth, this means things such as providing everyone with the resources and technologies needed for societal participation, putting publicly funded technology under open-source licenses, and not preventing technological development through profit-driven patents. Adaptability is about the extent to which a technique can be used independently, how easily it can be extended and coupled with other techniques, and how this can be facilitated by standardizing basic components. From a degrowth perspective, this encourages longer warranty periods and guaranteed reparability, as well as control over one’s own data in digital space, since internet users could then safeguard the information, they share across different platforms. Bio-interaction means the interaction with the living world: What effects does a technology have on living organisms, whether humans, animals, or plants, as well as on entire ecosystems? Degrowth calls for technologies to be considered over their entire life cycles, from resource procurement to disposal, and for the precautionary principle to be applied when assessing the health and environmental risks of new technologies, from solar radiation management to genetic engineering. Technologies should aim to achieve a closed-loop economy that is as complete as possible, in which all industrial raw materials are completely recycled, and all degradable raw materials are returned to the ecological cycle. The final dimension of convivial technology, appropriateness, involves assessing whether a certain technology is appropriate for the task to be performed. In a degrowth society, technologies should maintain a meaningful relationship between the time and material resource input and what is to be achieved. This means, for example, moving around in a largely car-free city designed around neighborhoods with public transport, (cargo) bicycles, and on foot, instead of using individual cars.

(5) Global justice and reparations: Since rich countries are historically responsible for most of the carbon emissions, they are particularly responsible for degrowing their economies to not transgress planetary boundaries and leave ecological space for self-determined economic, political, and social pathways in the Global South. Determining policies for “contraction and convergence”—for a global contraction of ecologically damaging production and a convergence of living standards—requires planning. However, the global politics of degrowth should not be confined to ending the harm of the Global North’s externalization and expropriation through policies such as moratoria on green extractivism, caps on resource and energy use, and degrowing resource intensive sectors. Degrowth should also take into account the effects of such policies on people in the Global South. This, again, requires forms of globally coordinated planning.30 For example, degrowth in rich countries could, if introduced unilaterally, heavily damage Global South economies that rely on exporting resources and consumer goods, or on tourism, as was evidenced by the effects of the COVID-19 lockdowns. Policies will need to be put in place to address this—not only to support Global South countries in switching away from their dependency on unequal exchange and globalized markets, but also to ensure that degrowth policies actually lead to greater global justice through a sharing of resources, knowledge, technology, and cooperation, as well as through preferential trade arrangements.

Similarly, ecological reparations require global coordination and planning. A degrowth perspective on reparations would demand full debt cancellation for the Global South. Moreover, an internationalist addition to proposals for national universal basic incomes, degrowth should promote global unconditional cash transfers to individuals, ideally weighed by accumulated disadvantages.31 The Global North must significantly increase its financial support of climate adaptation, particularly in the South and within a framework of intersectional justice, as part of a larger agenda of transformation. These efforts should be funded mainly by the Global North and involve ecological remediation, such as rewilding, carbon drawdown, and land reform.

The restructuring of the economy through degrowth would promote a “deglobalization” of economic relations, or what Utsa and Prabhat Patnaik, following Egyptian economist Samir Amin, called “de-linking” the Global South from neoliberal globalization and its exploitative trade and financial system dominated by the North.32 This restructuring seeks to limit trade in goods and services that are problematic from an ecological and human rights perspective and are largely driven by corporations taking advantage of international differentials in unit labor costs. A particular focus is on reducing shipping and aviation, as well as restricting the international movement of capital—a policy that could play a key role in the transition to stabilize international markets.33 At the same time, degrowth pursues the expansion of beneficial trade (particularly to the Global South), cultural exchange, slow travel, and the freedom of movement of people. The goal is not to revert to nationalism and isolation but to create regionally anchored, but interconnected and open, economic relationships and much more localized production.34

Surviving the Capitalocene

Capitalist accumulation is driving ecological breakdown and threatening to destroy the very foundations of human civilization. To prevent this and achieve rapid decarbonization while upholding living standards requires a society-wide social-ecological transformation, comparable in magnitude to the Industrial Revolution, but much faster. It is, as stated by Kohei Saito, essential to recognize that development of the “productive forces” under contemporary capitalism does “not automatically prepare the material foundation for [a] new postcapitalist society,” but rather is more likely to contribute to “the robbery of nature.” Rich societies thus need to transition toward degrowth. Everyone interested in postcapitalist economies in the age of climate emergency should thus engage with the multiple proposals developed within the field of degrowth activism and research.

At the same time, achieving degrowth requires democratic ecological planning, that is, a collective effort to reorganize the provisioning system toward equity and sufficiency.

As Saito states: “Social planning is indispensable to banning excessive and dirty production and to staying within planetary boundaries while satisfying basic social needs.”3535 We have argued that degrowth should engage in the debates and research on democratic planning that have been largely overlooked.

To further the discussion of the planning-degrowth nexus, radical degrowth policies offer chances to explore ecological planning beyond growth—including policies to democratize the economy, phase out fossil fuel sectors, create social provisioning systems, ensure equity, and facilitate technological development and climate reparations. We hope this article will inspire a heightened exchange aimed at examining the kind of planning that degrowth entails and how planning must be adapted to address the unique questions, needs, and challenges that come with degrowth.


  1. European Environment Agency, “Is Europe Reducing Its Greenhouse Gas Emissions?,” June 22, 2022; German Council on the Environment, Wie viel CO2 darf Deutschland maximal noch ausstoßen?: Fragen und Antworten zum CO2-Budget (2022); “IPCC’s Conservative Nature Masks the True Scale of Action Need to Avert Catastrophic Climate Change,” The Conversation, March 24, 2023.
  2. Helmut Haberl et al., “A Systematic Review of the Evidence on Decoupling of GDP, Resource Use and GHG Emissions, Part II: Synthesizing the Insights,” Environmental Research Letters 15, no. 6 (June 2020); Jason Hickel and Giorgos Kallis, “Is Green Growth Possible?,” New Political Economy 25, no. 4 (June 2020): 469–86; Jason Hickel et al., “Urgent Need for Post-Growth Climate Mitigation Scenarios,” Nature Energy (August 2021): 1–3.
  3. Matthias Schmelzer, Andrea Vetter, and Aaron Vansintjan, The Future Is Degrowth: A Guide to a World Beyond Capitalism (London: Verso, 2022).
  4. Michael Löwy, Bengi Akbulut, Sabrina Fernandes, and Giorgos Kallis, “For an Ecosocialist Degrowth,” Monthly Review 73, no. 11 (April 2022): 56–58.
  5. Schmelzer, Vetter, and Vansintjan, The Future Is Degrowth.
  6. André Gorz, Critique of Economic Reason (London: Verso, 1989); see also Ulrich Brand et al., “From Planetary to Societal Boundaries: An Argument for Collectively Defined Self-Limitation,” Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy 17, no. 1 (January 2021): 265–92.
  7. Brand et al., “From Planetary to Societal Boundaries,” 276; Schmelzer, Vetter, and Vansintjan, The Future Is Degrowth; Giorgos Kallis, Limits: Why Malthus Was Wrong and Why Environmentalists Should Care (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2019).
  8. Leigh Phillips and Michal Rozworski, People’s Republic of Wal-Mart: How the World’s Biggest Corporations Are Laying the Foundation for Socialism (London: Verso, 2019); Christoph Sorg, “Failing to Plan Is Planning to Fail: Toward an Expanded Notion of Democratically Planned Postcapitalism,” Critical Sociology 49, no. 3 (May 2023): 475–93.
  9. P. Cockshott, J. P. Dapprich, and A. Cottrell, Economic Planning in an Age of Climate Crisis (Independently published, 2022); Robin Hahnel, Democratic Economic Planning (London: Routledge, 2021); Simon Tremblay-Pepin and Frederic Legault, “A Brief Sketch of Three Models of Democratic Economic Planning,” Élisabeth-Bruyère School of Social Innovation, Saint Paul University, April 2021.
  10. Michael Löwy, “Eco-Socialism and Democratic Planning,” Socialist Register 2007 (New York: Monthly Review Press, 2007), 294–309; Fikret Adaman and Pat Devine, “Democracy, Participation and Social Planning,” in Routledge Handbook of Ecological Economics (London: Routledge, 2017); Marta Harnecker and Jose Bartolome, Planning from Below: A Decentralized Participatory Planning Proposal (New York: New York University Press, 2019); Troy Vettese and Drew Pendergrass, Half-Earth Socialism: A Plan to Save the Future from Extinction, Climate Change and Pandemics (London: Verso, 2022); Nick Dyer-Witheford, “Biocommie: Power and Catastrophe,” essay for Socialist Futures workshop, European University Institute, Florence, Italy, May 25–26, 2022, Platforms, Populisms, Pandemics and Riots,
  11. Brand et al., “From Planetary to Societal Boundaries.”
  12. Cédric Durand, Elena Hofferberth, and Matthias Schmelzer, “Planning beyond Growth: The Case for Economic Democracy within Limits,” Political Economy Working Papers, Université de Genève, January 25, 2023.
  13. Stefania Barca, “The Labor(s) of Degrowth,” Capitalism Nature Socialism 30, no. 2 (2019): 207–16.
  14. Elena Hofferberth, Pathways to an Equitable Post-Growth Economy: Towards an Economics for Social-Ecological Transformation (Leeds: University of Leeds Press, 2021); Melanie Pichler et al., “EU Industrial Policy: Between Modernization and Transformation of the Automotive Industry,” Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions 38 (March 2021): 140–52.
  15. Christopher Olk, Colleen Schneider, and Jason Hickel, “How to Pay for Saving the World: Modern Monetary Theory for a Degrowth Transition” (preprint, 2023).
  16. Hickel et al., “Urgent Need for Post-Growth Climate Mitigation Scenarios”; Vettese and Pendergrass, Half-Earth Socialism.
  17. Andreas Malm, Fossil Capital: The Rise of Steam Power and the Roots of Global Warming (London: Verso, 2016).
  18. Daniela Gabor, “The Wall Street Consensus,” Development and Change 52, no. 3 (2021): 429–59; Brett Christophers, “Fossilised Capital: Price and Profit in the Energy Transition,” New Political Economy 27, no. 1 (January 2022): 146–59.
  19. See, for example, the campaign for a fossil fuel nonproliferation treaty, supported by one hundred Nobel laureates and thousands of scientists, which demands an international agreement to end fossil fuels on a fair and binding schedule: org.
  20. Kelly Trout et al., “Existing Fossil Fuel Extraction Would Warm the World beyond 1.5°C,” Environmental Research Letters 17, no. 6 (May 2022).
  21. Lucas Chancel et al., World Inequality Report 2022 (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2022).
  22. Janice Hopkins Tanne, “US Life Expectancy Reaches 25 Year Low,” BMJ 379 (December 2022).
  23. Anna Coote and Andrew Percy, The Case for Universal Basic Services (Cambridge: Polity, 2020), 133.
  24. Nancy Fraser, “Contradictions of Capital and Care,” New Left Review 100 (2016): 99–117; Rebecca Solnit, A Paradise Built in Hell: The Extraordinary Communities That Arise in Disaster (New York: Penguin, 2010).
  25. Joel Millward-Hopkins et al., “Providing Decent Living with Minimum Energy: A Global Scenario,” Global Environmental Change 65 (November 2020); Joel Millward-Hopkins and Yannick Oswald, “Reducing Global Inequality to Secure Human Wellbeing and Climate Safety: A Modelling Study,” Lancet Planetary Health 7, no. 2 (February 2023): e147–54.
  26. Thomas Piketty, Capital in the Twenty-First Century (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 2014); Millward-Hopkins and Oswald, “Reducing Global Inequality to Secure Human Wellbeing and Climate Safety.”
  27. Stefan Gössling and Andreas Humpe, “Millionaire Spending Incompatible with 1.5°C Ambitions,” Cleaner Production Letters 4 (December 2022).
  28. Doris Fuchs et al., Consumption Corridors: Living a Good Life Within Sustainable Limits (London: Routledge, 2021).
  29. Andrea Vetter, “The Matrix of Convivial Technology—Assessing Technologies for Degrowth,” Journal of Cleaner Production, Technology and Degrowth, 197 (October 2018): 1778–86; Schmelzer, Vetter, and Vansintjan, The Future Is Degrowth.
  30. For the following, see Matthias Schmelzer, “From Downscaling to Global Justice: On the Need of Linking Climate Reparations and Degrowth,” in Facing the Socio-Ecological Crisis: Delinking and the Question of Global Reparations, ed. Ndongo Samba Sylla (New York: Pluto, forthcoming).
  31. Olúfẹ́mi O. Táíwò, Reconsidering Reparations: Worldmaking in the Case of Climate Crisis (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2022).
  32. Utsa Patnaik and Prabhat Patnaik, Capital and Imperialism: Theory, History, and the Present (New York: New York University Press, 2021).
  33. Stay Grounded, Degrowth of Aviation: Reducing Air Travel in a Just Way (Vienna: Stay Grounded, 2019).
  34. Samuel Decker, “From Degrowth to De-Globalization,” Degrowth.Info, January 23, 2018.
  35. Kohei Saito, Marx in the Anthropocene: Towards the Idea of Degrowth Communism (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2023), 177, 242.
2023, Volume 75, Number 03 (July-August 2023)
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