Ecosystems as Models for Restoring our Economies, 2nd Edition

Ecosystems as Models for Restoring our Economies, 2nd Edition

To a Resilient and Sustainable State

By John H. Giordanengo

Ecosystems as Models to Restoring Our Economies appeals to a broad range of people across ages, values and political beliefs, and will change the way we pursue a resilient and sustainable economy. Just when you think there are no good paths forward, the knowledge of ecosystems guides the way.

EPUB, 250 Pages


February 2025

£25.00, $35.00

PDF, 250 Pages


February 2025

£25.00, $35.00

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About This Book

Emerging from the fields of ecological restoration and economics, this interdisciplinary book delivers a clear path to restoring our economies in a way that speaks in a universal language to policy makers, business owners, academics and the general public. Traditional approaches to sustainability focus on the social, environmental and economic pillars of an economy. However, little attention is paid to the foundations upon which those pillars rest. Those foundations – a system’s foundational components – have been ignored for good reason; we have lacked a comprehensive understanding of what they are and how they interact. Cross-cutting research between ecological and economic systems reveals three foundational components (i.e., drivers, long levers) of highly resilient and productive economies and ecosystems. The identification and management of those components is perhaps the most important insight to resolving growing tensions between society, nature and the global market economy.
Chronic social, environmental and economic externalities have defined the past seven hundred years of evolving global market capitalism. In highly developed countries such as the United States, the most recent global trade patterns have been accompanied by flat real wages, flat productivity growth, a growing wealth gap, and a balance tilted largely toward lower resilience and resistance to global economic turmoil. Most of these externalities and poor economic performance stem from our mismanagement of diversity, energy and trade. Restoring the balance of these components does not jeopardise our quality of life and security, but holds promise that our most important social, environmental and economic values will be ensured.
The scale at which diversity, energy and trade must be managed is justified by self-regulating ecosystems such as jungles, prairies and pine-oak forests. That scale is not global, and it is not hyper local. The economic and ecological rationale agree that the scale of a sustainable economy – the natural geography of humans – is regional. The closing chapters outline earth’s ancient wisdom for restoring our economies, as illuminated by humanities shared experience in ecological restoration.
The process of ecosystem recovery following disturbance (i.e., succession) is one such beacon of wisdom. Unwittingly, developed economies such as the US mange succession to concentrate wealth into fewer hands, while degrading productive capacity and resilience. Following nature’s lead economic policies can readily move the succession dial toward the productive and diverse center, where wealth and resources are recirculated quickly, opportunities are continually created, and resilience and resistance are fortified – a stout shield in the face of global economic turmoil. Turmoil that is predicted to only increase in the 21st century. Economic restoration is not only possible – it is our humanitarian duty.


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Author Information

John H. Giordanengo is a founder and principal restoration economist of Economic Restoration Services, and principal restoration ecologist of AloTerra Restoration Services. John has 33 years of professional and academic experience in ecological restoration, business conservation, and economics, and has delivered over 250 professional talks, paper and books for audiences around the globe.


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