Like a lone cowboy, Peter Victor was one of the first voices to speak up and lead the way for ecological economics.

The pin factory, about which Adam Smith wrote in 1776, has served since then as an admirable example of the gains in productivity to be had from the division of labour. Although Smith was not writing about the activities of academics his analysis applies just as much to their world as to that of industry. Division of labour among academics has facilitated the extremely intensive study of many aspects of human behaviour and the physical environment in which it takes place. In terms of the increase in our knowledge of the Universe, this specialisation by academics has been highly productive indeed. It is something of a paradox, therefore, that the very process by which we gain knowledge should hinder and even prevent the solution to problems that our studies reveal...

Read Peter Victor's full essay from our very first issue in the pdf here.

Ecological economist Peter A. Victor is a professor in Environmental Studies at York University. He has worked for nearly 50 years in Canada and abroad on economy and environment as an academic, consultant and public servant.

If you liked this article, please subscribe or donate today to support our work.

A\J moderates comments to maintain a respectful and thoughtful discussion.
Comments may be considered for publication in the magazine.