smart growth... / by Nick Ierodiaconou

http://blogs.harvardbusiness.org/haque/2009/01/davos_discussing_a_depression.html "20th century growth was dumb. ...Dumb growth is unsustainable - if the world grows the same way that developed countries did, well, there won't be a world.... 21st century economies will be powered by smart growth. Not all growth is created equal. Some kinds of growth are more valuable than others."

Haque talks about smart growth being founded on 4 pillars:

1. Outcomes, not income.

2. Connections, not transactions.

3. People, not product.

4. Creativity, not productivity.

I would question - is it smart growth (a caring sharing driven society) or should there be a fundamental questioning of our understanding/need for "growth"? Perhaps the questions that should be driving us are equality, stability, cohesion? Innovation to drive productivity from a grass roots/entrepreneurial source versus productivity in a top down hierarchical format are just differing ways to churn growth, albeit "green" growth or "unethical" growth. Should there be a re-understanding of our value systems and whether growth in the form that it is currently understood is still valid? Should innovation today be concnetrated on unlocking new systems/vehicles to measure and exchange those intangible values of community, well being, cohesion etc which to date have been exchanged for the "outcomes not incomes" Haque refers to? Is it possible to grow business models and social contracts that enable a more valid, sustainable and equitable forms of exchange.

AF