Accept the limits and learn to be cooperative and regenerative
How a company thinks it should behave is heavily influenced by the trending economic beliefs. This becomes a problem when modern economics has not been that good at dealing with age old limits.
Abstract economic models have omitted the completely decisive role nature and its resources play for any economy, and that the dissipative structures of companies devour these resources. Instead it shows economy as a closed convenient circular flow, that could go on forever.
Even more devastating has been the belief, the world view, where the the economy is the whole and earth the subsystem, a store of resources, that has made many economists blind to the more real Copernican view where economy is a subsystem to the whole, to earth. Blind to the limits found in the finitude of our planet.
With our finite planet, 1st and 2nd law of thermodynamics and the physical notion that nothing can grow forever in an contained environment like, well earth, you realize this there has to be a change in our economy with its focus on growth and in its companies focused on profit-through-growth if we want to stop our ongoing crash into the limits of our planet.
One change is, as mentioned under the goal, to change the focus of the economy. Switching from a goal of growth to a goal of helping human beings to flourish within limits would influence the behaviour of companies. The changed goal will probably help companies accepting the limits and find ways to transform from being a degenerative business to a regenerative business.
Bending the current linear degenerative throughput into a circular economy is a step on the way in being regenerative but it will not be enough. There are limits to the size of the circles and since the entropic nature of the economic process can never fully be escaped, the circle cannot be fully closed. As Kate Raworth says
“only generous design can bring us back below the Doughnut’s ecological ceiling.”
Businesses and economy need to see themselves as part of the whole and try to mimic nature and give back more than it takes.
Being a regenerative business, besides of working with the ecosystems and replenishing the earth from which it borrows, emphasizes mutual beneficial collaborations rather than competing in a companies race to the monopoly top.
Considering the increasing scarcity of critical resources, these more collaborative companies would speak to our innate predisposition to cooperate and share and would likely increase our chances of staying within the limits, avoiding calamities and bringing prosperity to all.
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