Earth4All is a vision. We hope everybody will use it to make better choices for people and the planet. The model illustrates how key social and planetary dimensions interact, and provides a realistic path to wellbeing for all on our planet. The book proposes five extraordinary turnarounds, and fifteen policy “levers” to achieve such a vision.
We hope to inspire people to demand change and address the current lack of imagination of our political and economic debate. Ultimately, we want governments to re-program our economies. We hope to provide further momentum to many existing initiatives that already produce prospects of hope in all corners of the world.
No model can predict the future. The future is not predicted, it is created. A model is like a map when you need to explore a new territory. What is the future if not a new territory for all of us? The model illustrates – building on a set of assumptions – the routes we may take, how different elements interact with each other, and the consequences of these interactions. The model ensures logical relations among these elements are consistent across time and are based on trends and behaviours of the past decades. A model is therefore an incomplete picture, but it can be used, together with other instruments, as a basis for navigation.
Earth4All is grounded on systems thinking, a branch of science that helps us understand complexity, feedback loops, and exponential impacts. At the heart of the project, there are the findings and proposals of the Transformational Economics Commission, supported by economic literature and a state-of-the-art systems dynamics model, Earth4All.
The Earth4All model is open source and will be made available for free in a user-friendly, intuitive interface. A methodological note was published in September 2022, together with the book, for researchers to review and comment. We expect some of the findings to be published in academic peer-reviewed journals in the coming years. We look forward to any feedback that may help strengthen the model.
The Earth4All model includes scenarios for ten regions in the world: Sub-Saharan Africa, south Asia, south-east Asia, China, western Europe, eastern Europe and central Asia, Latin America, Middle East and North Africa, Pacific region and the United States of America.
These are macro-regions that allow the model to incorporate issues – like trade – that go beyond individual countries. Apart from the Unites States of America, India and China, it is not possible to explore the model per a single country.
Likewise, it is not possible to use the model for a single city. We welcome any effort by the research community to translate the model into country level analysis or what the two major scenarios in Earth4All, Too Little Too Late and the Giant Leap, mean for smaller geographies.
We are agnostic about growth. It really depends on what is growing. GDP growth is a quantity hiding a complex qualitative reality. Without qualitative change in terms of actual economic activities, with a massive shift towards sustainable practices over a broad spectrum, GDP growth is unsustainable, and the main driver of anthropic climate change. Low-income countries need to grow their economies – this can be done sustainably. Revolutions in energy and food will drive economic growth. But instead of a myopic focus on economic growth, political leaders should instead ask: is the economy optimised for resilience? Is it improving the lives of the majority? Is the system perceived as reasonably fair?
Population will present significant challenges for our future, but likely not the challenges that we have imagined in the past. Earth4All hypothesizes a relatively faster demographic transition. On one hand, lower population numbers will lessen the stress over key natural resources. On the other, a faster tradition implies a faster and more pronounced global ageing, and a steep reduction in the ratio of active workers to pensioners. We believe that this will be the main challenge of our shared future: how to stabilise the population in the long-term, while providing for the needs faced by a rapidly ageing population during a challenging transition period.
Reducing inequality is one of the five turnarounds Earth4All is advocating for. Inequality between countries or continents largely follows colonial or neo-colonial patterns, which are still visible in trade and financial flows. When it comes to poverty, or energy and food systems, there is no way to act on them without tackling the structural inequalities between high-income countries and middle and low-income countries). Finally, patriarchy remains the main obstacle to women’s empowerment. In the Earth4All project, we intentionally strive to decolonise ourselves, particularly through the Transformational Economics Commission, and our campaign work. We are aware that it is a long journey, and we welcome any feedback to improve.
The Earth for All book is currently available in English, German, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Italian, Swedish and French. Find where to purchase it here.
Key findings are published in a brief format (in English, Chinese, French, German, Spanish). Papers developed by the members of the Transformational Economics Commission – the so-called “Deep-dives” contributing to the development of the book – can be found here.
If you are an editor and you would like to publish the book in other languages, get in touch with us.
The 21st Century Transformational Economics Commission (TEC) gathers economic thinkers and leaders from all six continents of the world. TEC members meet regularly to discuss the greatest challenges of our time and to propose feasible solutions to address them. The TEC builds on the experience of the Club of Rome in convening strategic dialogues and breaking new grounds for our societies. TEC members bring diverse expertise, perspectives and personal backgrounds, and look at the root causes and dynamics of our economies – beyond single issues – and how they impact our life on this planet. They publish work for Earth4All in the form of deep dive papers.
Earth4All is initially funded by the Angela Wright Bennett Foundation, the Generation Foundation, the Global Challenges Foundation, the Laudes Foundation and Partners for a New Economy. It is additionally supported by the passion of individuals and organisations who devote their time to bring the project to life.