Small Is Beautiful: A Study of Economics as if People Mattered

Front Cover
Random House, May 31, 2011 - Business & Economics - 288 pages
26 Reviews

How does our economic system impact the way we live? Does it really affect what we truly care about?

Oxford economist E. F. Schumacher provides an enlightening study of our economic system and its purpose, challenging the current state of excessive consumption in our society. Offering a crucial message for the modern world struggling to balance economic growth with the human costs of globalisation, Small Is Beautiful puts forward the revolutionary yet viable case for building our economies around the needs of communities, not corporations.

‘One of the 100 most influential books published since World War II’ The Times Literary Supplement

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - the.ken.petersen - LibraryThing

It must be so frustrating to be ahead of your time: to know that you have an important message only to find that the world is not ready to listen. Schumacher's book is so foresighted that, even now ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - drmom62 - LibraryThing

There's a quote of Schumacher's in the book as commentary which really gets to the core of the book's message. "Economics without Buddhism, i.e. without spiritual, human, and ecological values, is ... Read full review

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About the author (2011)

Before the publication of Small is Beautiful, his bestselling reappraisal of Western economic attitudes, Dr E. F. Schumacher was already well known as an economist, journalist and progressive entrepreneur. He was Economic Adviser to the National Coal Board from 1950 to 1970, and was also the originator of the concept of Intermediate Technology for developing countries and Founder and Chairman of the Intermediate Technology Development Group Ltd (now Practical Action). He also served as President of the Soil Association (Britains largest organic farming organisation, founded thirty years ago) and as Director of the Scott-Bader Company (pathfinders in polymer chemistry and common ownership).

Born in Germany, he first came to England in 1930 as a Rhodes Scholar to study economics at New College, Oxford. Later, at the age of twenty-two, he taught economics at Columbia University, New York. As he found theorising without practical experience unsatisfying, he then went into business, farming and journalism. He resumed the academic life for a period at Oxford during the war, afterwards serving as Economic Adviser to the British Control Commission in Germany from 1946 to 1950. In later years, his advice on problems of rural development was sought by many overseas governments.

Dr Schumacher was awarded the CBE in 1974. He died in 1977.