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Green Economy and Bio-based Economics: Assessment and Critique of Their Philosophical Assumptions

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  • Leonardi, Emanuele

Abstract

The paper aims at establishing a philosophical comparison between the notion of green economy and the concept of bio-based economics. Against the background of the current, devastating economic crisis, they both represent an attempt to overcome a growth impasse through the incorporation of the environmental limit as a new terrain for accumulation and valorization. Otherwise put, both green economy and bio-based economics assume that economic growth and environmental preservation not only are not contradictory, but can actually set in motion – through the discursive formation of sustainability – a virtuous circle in which the increase of one element fosters a parallel increase of the other. The analysis of such an affinity will be historically analyzed by referring to Michel Foucault's biopolitical analyses. Subsequently, the crucial notion of bio-mimicry will be theoretically approached, as will the dangers embodied in the currently under way process of economization of nature. The argument is that by modelling nature according to industrial needs or competitive frameworks a crucial risk emerges: the possibility of tackling an undeniable environmental crisis by deepening an already unjust social polarization. By contrast, a public goods or common-based perspective would provide a theoretical background for tackling the social, economic and ecological crises simultaneously. For such a background to emerge, however, market competitiveness as well as sacred property rights regimes should be substituted by common cooperation and sharing-cultures.

Suggested Citation

  • Leonardi, Emanuele, 2013. "Green Economy and Bio-based Economics: Assessment and Critique of Their Philosophical Assumptions," 2013 Second Congress, June 6-7, 2013, Parma, Italy 149908, Italian Association of Agricultural and Applied Economics (AIEAA).
  • Handle: RePEc:ags:aiea13:149908
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    File URL: http://purl.umn.edu/149908
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Viaggi, Davide & Mantino, Francesco & Mazzocchi, Mario & Moro, Daniele & Stefani, Gianluca, 2012. "From Agricultural to Bio-based Economics? Context, State of the Art and Challenges," Bio-based and Applied Economics Journal, Italian Association of Agricultural and Applied Economics (AIEAA), issue 1, April.
    2. Schmid, Otto & Padel, Susanne & Levidow, Les, 2012. "The Bio-Economy Concept and Knowledge Base in a Public Goods and Farmer Perspective," Bio-based and Applied Economics Journal, Italian Association of Agricultural and Applied Economics (AIEAA), issue 1, April.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    green economy; economization of nature; bio-mimicry; Michel Foucault; liberalism/neoliberalism; Environmental Economics and Policy; International Development; Q50; Q57;

    JEL classification:

    • Q50 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - General
    • Q57 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Ecological Economics

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