jump to navigation

Reinventing the current growth model: The need to rework the current economic system to serve all of humanity rather than an elite few August 4, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Economics, Economics: Development Theory and Policy applications, Growth and Inequqlity.
Tags: , , , ,
trackback

???????????Trickle down economicsA shocking investigative journey into the way the resource trade wreaks havoc on Africa, ‘The Looting Machine’ explores the dark underbelly of the global economy.

 

 

Although the grievances voiced differed from country to country and from region to region, the belief that the incumbent economic and political system was characterised by inequity and injustice was common to all.

If we are to avoid large-scale societal upheavals in this ultra-connected world, government, business and civil society must come together to rework the current economic system to serve all of humanity rather than just an elite few.

– Fergus Simpson, The Guardian

 

 

Widening inequality gap proof of outdated growth model

We need to rework the current economic system to serve all of humanity rather than an elite few, writes Xyntéo’s Fergus Simpson

 

January saw leading figures from business, government and civil society gather at the World Economic Forum in Davos. A broad spectrum of subjects were debated, including the prospect of a legally binding climate change agreement in Paris this December, Ebola and the nefarious advance of the Islamic State in Mesopotamia. I was particularly encouraged to see one topic keep cropping up – the crisis of burgeoning disparities in wealth.

In a report released in the runup to Davos, Oxfam predicted that within two years the richest 1% of people will have accumulated more wealth than the remaining 99%. The same study found that the wealth of the richest 80 billionaires has continued to increase since 2010, while the wealth of the poorest half has decreased over the same time period. The gap between the haves and the have-nots is growing.

History has taught us that there are moments when people rise up to make a point and say that enough is enough and times must change.

On 25 January 2011, the world witnessed one such moment – pro-democracy protesters occupied Tahrir square in Egypt’s capital, Cairo, demanding self-determination, equality of opportunity and freedom from the shackles of tyranny and oppression. Some 17 long days of demonstrations and civil disobedience followed, bringing the moribund autocracy of longtime Egyptian president Hosni Mubarak to an end.

This event formed part of a much broader social movement that swept across North Africa and the Middle East, toppling sclerotic regimes and corrupt dictators. Before long people in Spain, Greece, the UK and US took to the streets as well. Although the grievances voiced differed from country to country and from region to region, the belief that the incumbent economic and political system was characterised by inequity and injustice was common to all.

And it isn’t just the poor who have been affected – the middle classes have also borne the burden of mushrooming inequalities. Companies have tended to become more productive since the 1970s, but the incomes of middle class workers have remained largely static. Returns from higher productivity have tended to go to owners and investors, not to the workers.

In many ways, inequality has become the defining issue of our time. The popular uprisings that shook the Arab world at the start of this decade were just symptoms of this most elemental of societal ills.

Fortunately, there is no reason to suppose this state of affairs is inevitable.

A promising step forward was announced at Davos, when Ajay Banga, CEO of GLTE partner MasterCard, and Donald Kaberuka, president of the African Development Bank, revealed that they intend to collaborate to foster inclusive growth in Africa.

The MasterCard Labs for Financial Inclusion, funded by an $11m (£7.24m) grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, aims to enable more people to access banking services – generating greater equality of opportunity across the world, in developed and developing countries alike. The initiative will soon begin operations in Nairobi, Kenya, and aims to reach over 100 million people globally.

Technological advancements can support the implementation of projects designed to promote inclusive growth, such as the MasterCard Labs for Financial Inclusion. Digital innovations in payment systems and social media, for example, have enabled people to access markets, ideas and information to an extent that is unprecedented in human history.

Indeed, it has been said that the Egyptian revolution started when Whael Ghonim, a marketing executive at Google, saw the bloodied remains of Khaled Mohamed Said – a young man bludgeoned to death by the Egyptian police – pictured on Facebook. Incensed by the injustice that confronted him, Whael created the Facebook page “Kullena Khaled Said” – “We Are All Khaled Said”. Three months later 250,000 people had joined the page. Just one year later the Mubarak regime was no more.

If we are to avoid large-scale societal upheavals in this ultra-connected world, government, business and civil society must come together to rework the current economic system to serve all of humanity rather than just an elite few.

At Xyntéo, we are convinced that the current growth model has become out of date – incapable of meeting the demographic, climate and resource demands of today. Together with our partners, we believe that global business, with its clout, resources and energy, is uniquely placed to overcome this challenge. To us this means reinventing the current growth model so it brings prosperity to much larger numbers of people.

Fergus Simpson is project coordinator at Xyntéo

Read more at source:-

http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/xynteo-partner-zone/2015/feb/04/widening-inequality-gap-proof-of-outdated-growth-model

Comments»

No comments yet — be the first.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: