Essays on Neoclassic Economics and the Core Concepts of Sustainability Literature review

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The paper “ Neoclassic Economics and the Core Concepts of Sustainability” is a meaty example of the literature review on macro & microeconomics. It is an apparent fact that the meaning of sustainability has been subjected to immense discourses in the economics realm, most notably among the resource and environmental economists. This debate revolves around sustainability between the environment and the economy, or in from a generic perspective, between the ‘ manufactured capital’ and the ‘ natural capital’ .This fact is supported by Ayres, Bergh, and Gowdy (1999, 1) who determined that perhaps there is no other issue that has separated the traditional economic perspective of the natural world from the viewpoint of the majority of the natural scientists like the issue of sustainability. Against this backdrop, this paper is therefore a profound effort to explore how neoclassical economics agree and the extent to which it disagrees with the primary concepts of sustainability. Keywords: Sustainability, Mainstream economicsIntroductionVivien (2008, 2) cited that in the recent decades, issues whose origin is from environmental considerations and the unequal distribution of wealth at the global scale have elicited questions in regard to the goal of continued growth.

This issue has been subjected to diverse, more often antagonistic debates in the economics realm with the more new concept of sustainability which is supposed to be at the core of reconciling the dynamics in the ecological, social, and economics tenets being at the center of these discussions. Thus, it is apparent that this concept is a source of robust divergent interpretations in the wider realm of neoclassical economic analysis. This fact is supported by Mensar and Castro (2004, 2) who determined that there are two antagonistic schools of thought in relation to sustainability-the optimists, who mostly constitute the economists, and are strongly convinced that with market incentives, new technology, recycling, appropriate public policies, and material substitution, the earth is endowed with the capacity to satisfy the needs and enhance the extent of welfare among the humans, both in the contemporary and future generations.


Ayres, R., Bergh, J and Gowdy, J. 1999. Viewpoint: Weak Versus Strong Sustainability. (Accessed June 20th, 2012).

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Daly, H. 1996. Beyond growth. Boston: Beacon Press.

Dillon, J. 2010. The Economics of Sustainability. Toronto: Kairos.

Hayes, W. 2005. Economic Strategies for Sustainability. Forthcoming.

Holt R. 2010. Traditional Economic Development vs. Sustainable Economic Development. June 20th, 2012).

Mensar, A and Castro L. 2004. Sustainable Resource Use and Sustainable Development: A

Contradiction?. Bonn: University of Bonn.

OECD, 2002. Implementing domestic tradeable permits: Recent developments and future

Challenges. Paris: OECD.

OECD 2004. Tradeable permits: Policy evaluation, design and reform. Paris: OECD.

Pearce, D. and G. Atkinson. 1995. Measuring sustainable development. In The Handbook of

Environmental Economics, ed. D. W. Bromley,Oxford: Blackwell.

Solow R.M. 1992. An Almost Practical Step Towards Sustainability. In The RRF Reader in

Environmental and Resource Management, 263-272, Washington D.C: Resource for the Future.

Vivien F. 2008. Sustainable Development: An Overview of Economic proposal. Sapience1(2).

Williams, J and McNeill J 2005. Presentation to the 4th Global Conference on Business and

Economics, June 26-28, 2005: The Current Crisis in Neoclassical Economics and the Case for an Economic Analysis based on Sustainable Development. Oxford, UK: Oxford University.

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