In 2001, after Japan had fallen into what economist dread: stalled GDP-growth, I published these two articles in Japan.
In “Japan at the Crossroads” and “Japan is Not the Only Country Caught in the GNP-Growth Trap,” I viewed Japan through my “Quality of Life” metrics, as transforming from material economic growth at whatever social and environmental costs to a more mature stage of long term stability. As Japanese citizens acquired ever more material assets, they sought more livable communities and new forms of satisfaction. Japan’s infrastructure was the envy of the world, and its large public debt was owned by its own citizens – not by foreign bondholders. I called on then Prime Minister Koizumi to announce new quality of life goals and a national scorecard beyond GDP.
Today, I call on Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to reject the failed economics still lurching between austerity and stimulus an chart the new cause I advocated in these articles in 2001.
Hazel Henderson, President and Founder, Ethical Markets Media
Japan At the Crossroads, Hazel Henderson, 2001, Nikkei Ecology
Japan is Not the Only Country Caught in the GNP-Growth Trap, Hazel Henderson, 2001, Nikkei Ecology
(These and other archived articles by Hazel Henderson are available at www.hazelhenderson.com.)