The Doughnut offers a vision of what it means for humanity to thrive in the 21st century – and Doughnut Economics explores the mindset and ways of thinking needed to get us there.
There are six core principles to Doughnut Economics:
1 – Change the goal
2 – Tell a new story
3 – Nurture human nature
4 – Get savvy with systems
5 – Design to distribute
6 – Create to regenerate
You can watch a really wonderful overview of all of these principles on the Doughnut Economics YouTube channel, so if you’re more of a visual learner head over then and pop back to see how Penzance is working with the principles.
Principle 1: Change the goal
At the moment countries are measured by something called GDP, which stands for Gross Domestic Product. Wouldn’t it be better if we changed that goal to how happy a country’s citizens are?
There is something called the Happy Planet Index and here the UK ranks just 34th.
Principle 2: Tell a new story
We are slowly starting to see this happen. For decades we’ve believed in trickle down economics, in other words, if we let the rich get richer, then everyone benefits. We’ve seen that this doesn’t work at all so we need a new story about how to create fairness and equality in our economy.
Principle 3: Nurture human nature
Drop the human intervention and look at nature for solutions to our problems. What can we learn from what already exists?
Principle 4: Get savvy with systems
There is a lot of recent evidence that demonstrates that for all the planning that happens across the world there are many things that are out of our control. Instead of relying on the old truths we need to find a more nuanced approach that encourages our humanity not hides it behind numbers and data.
Principle 5: Design to distribute
Create systems where the wealth created is distributed and not hoarded. Where everyone can benefit from their input into society. Where no one goes hungry or cold.
Principle 6: Create to regenerate
We are taking more from our planet than we can put back. This means we will run out of resources. We must look at how we make everything and find smart ways to dispose of our unwanted items so that they can be reborn into something new.
Much like we’ve mentioned in a previous post on the Global Goals the Penzance Town Deal Board are putting sustainability at the top of the agenda. When it comes to Doughnut Economics, they are picking up on work started by Cornwall Council when they created a Decision Making Wheel to evaluate projects.
The Board has advanced that wheel a little bit further and soon we will be sharing with you the role of the Doughnut Decision Making Wheel when the Board were choosing the projects for the Accelerator Fund.
Different from the Global Goals the Doughnut helps the Board to get practical with sustainability. It offers questions and considerations. The hope is that the Decision Making Wheel can be used by any organisation and everyone can benefit from a standard set of questions. Making sustainability easy and accessible.