In the tradition of E. F. Schumacher’s Small Is Beautiful, renowned economist Clair Brown argues persuasively for a new economics built upon equality, sustainability, and right living. Traditional economics measures the ways in which we spend our income, and doesn’t attribute worth to the crucial human interactions that give our lives meaning.
Clair Brown, an economist at UC Berkeley and a practicing Buddhist, has developed a holistic model, one based on the notion that quality of life should be measured by more than national income. In Buddhist Economics, Brown advocates an approach to organizing the economy that embraces, rather than skirts, questions of values, sustainability, and inequality. Complementing the award-winning work of Paul Krugman and Jeffrey Sachs, and the paradigm-breaking spirit of Thomas Piketty and Amartya Sen, Brown incorporates the Buddhist emphasis on interconnectedness, capability, and happiness into her vision for a sustainable and compassionate world.
Buddhist economics leads us to think mindfully as we go about our daily activities, and offers a way to appreciate how our actions affect the welfare of those around us. By replacing the endless cycle of desire with more positive collective priorities, our lives can become more meaningful as well as happier. Inspired by the popular seminar course Brown developed for UC Berkeley that has garnered international attention, Buddhist Economics represents an enlightened approach to our modern world infused with ancient wisdom, with benefits both personal and global, for generations to come.
Clair Brown is a professor of economics and director of the Center for Work, Technology, and Society at the University of California, Berkeley. An economist focusing on work and economic justice, she is a past director of the Institute of International Relations at Berkeley, and chair of the Committee on Education Policy of the UCB Academic Senate. She lives in Richmond, CA.