Int. J. of Environmental Policy and Decision Making   »   2015 Vol.1, No.3



Title: Beyond growth and development: buen vivir as an alternative to current paradigms


Authors: Salvatore Monni; Massimo Pallottino


Department of Economics, Roma Tre University, Rome, Italy
Interdisciplinary Center for Peace Studies, Pisa University, Pisa, Italy


Abstract: The aim of this paper is to investigate to what extent buen vivir ('good life'), Latin America's new concept for collective well being, can be considered a way forward beyond current paradigms related to economic growth, development, ideology and state building, with its strengths and potential weaknesses or just a new version of political discourse. In order to answer this question, we will briefly review the literature that can help to trace the buen vivir origins in the cosmovisions of Latino American indigenous peoples, and to connect it to reflections made in different areas of social, economic and political sciences, trying to identify the areas in which divergences arise using established approaches and frameworks. In the conclusions we will also try to look at the added value brought by the buen vivir towards a renewed understanding of political, social, and economic objectives of the associated life.


Keywords: buen vivir; development policy; Latin America; plurinational state; socialism; state building; collective wellbeing; indigenous peoples.


DOI: 10.1504/IJEPDM.2015.074300


Int. J. of Environmental Policy and Decision Making, 2015 Vol.1, No.3, pp.184 - 204


Submission date: 09 Aug 2015
Date of acceptance: 15 Sep 2015
Available online: 21 Jan 2016



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