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 Post subject: Consumptionomics (new book and interview with author)
PostPosted: Sun, 13 Feb 2011, 11:01 
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I heard the author, an Indian born in Malaysia and now living in Hong Kong, talking about his newly-published book, "Consumptionomics: Asia's Role in Reshaping Capitalism and Saving the Planet", on the Bbc Worldservice's Global Business programme (25 minutes) last night.

A good quote from him - he likens the current consumerist aspirations in Asia to :
Quote:
Coming late to the party. And the party has been excessive, the party has created a great amount of fun and enjoyment for a small minority and now the others want in and there's not enough food at the table.

Summary on the Global Business page:
Quote:
This week on Global Business, Peter Day hears from Chandran Nair, Management Consultant and Founder of The Global Institute for Tomorrow.

He is also the author of a book called Consumptionomics: Asia's Role in Reshaping Capitalism and Saving the Planet.

In the book he argues that for years the engine of global capitalism has been fuelled by consumption, but that the world will not be able to cope with the expansion of this style of consumption in the developing world and therefore a new model has to be found.

Summary of the book on Amazon.com:
Quote:
Product Description

Consumption has been the fuel that has driven the engine of global capitalism. The recent financial crisis has seen the West's leading economists and policy makers urging Asia to make a conscious effort to consume more and thereby help save the global economy. This is a view shaped by conventional wisdom which conveniently refuses to acknowledge both the unpleasant effects of consumption and the limits to growth.

Consumptionomics argues that this blinkered view needs to be replaced by a more rational approach to the challenges of the 21st century. If Asians aspire to consumption levels taken for granted in the West the results will be environmentally catastrophic across the globe. Needless to say it will also have significant geopolitical impacts as nations scramble for diminishing resources.

Asian governments and leaders find themselves at a crossroads. They may either continue on the current, unsustainable path of Western-style consumption-led capitalism, disregarding the evidence, or they may realize that they hold the unenviable responsibility of leading the world to a more sustainable path. The solutions will entail making sensitive political choices and adopting certain forms of government to effect such a fundamental change of direction. This will all fly in the face of current ideological beliefs rooted in free market capitalism. But if Asia is willing to take on this responsibility it will help to save the planet whilst reshaping capitalism.

About the Author

Chandran Nair is the founder of the Global Institute For Tomorrow (GIFT), an independent social venture think tank dedicated to advancing an understanding of the impacts of globalisation through thought leadership and positive action to affect change. Chandran was chairman of Environmental Resources Management (ERM) in Asia Pacific until 2004, establishing the company as Asia's leading environmental consultancy. For more than a decade, Chandran has strongly advocated a more sustainable approach to development in Asia, advising governments and multi-national corporations to instill these principles into their policies and key decision-making processes. He has advised the Hong Kong government to devise a new approach that gives the public a bigger role in key policy making decisions - a first for Asia. In addition to his work with GIFT, Chandran continues to provide strategic management advice and coaching to business leaders. In this regard, he advises current and future leaders on how to meet the challenges of doing business in Asia, and of globalisation, investment geo-politics, leadership development, ethics, sustainability, and corporate social responsibility. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

I'll be adding this book to my reading list.

Here is the link to his Global Institute For Tomorrow.

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