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Short profile - Clive L. Spash

Clive L. Spash

Research Groups: “Social Ecological Transformation”, “Public Policy & Governance”, “Development”

a. Current research activities

I have been working on conservations issues and regulatory policy reflecting upon the role of natural sciences versus economics.  This has in part been oriented towards a critique of the neoliberalisation of the environment and its commodification.  I have two recent articles on the topic, one of which critically reviews the policy of ‘offsetting’ of biodiversity loss and environmental damages (Spash, 2015a), and the other categories discourses on the environment and the loss of the ecological discourse from policy (Spash and Aslaksen, 2015).

Climate change policy and mitigation is an on-going topic of research.  I recently summarised my Australian experience (Spash, 2014b). I have work in progress on ethics and economics around the issue.  I have been presenting work on the myths relating to climate policy (in)action.  I have written a critical review of recent promotion of economic growth as a solution (rather than cause) (Spash, 2014a).

Another area is synthesising critical social science and realism and integrating social ecological and economic knowledge.  This theoretical work has been appearing in various journal articles (Spash, 2012; 2013), and book chapters (Spash, 2015b; c).  As part of this research I am editing a 50 chapter volume on ecological economics and writing a monograph on social ecological economics.

Another area of current activity and though is on the future post-growth society (Spash, 2015d).  This also relates to social ecological transformation.  I have been working on issues relatingto topics such as degrowth, steady/stationary state economics and sustainability.  This questions the very meaning of development.

I have two grant applications currently submitted.  Both are in the areas of social ecological transformation, alternative economic and social institutions and governance.

b. Current teaching obligations

M.Sc. Social Ecological Economics & Policy, Interdisciplinary Methodology

M.Sc. Social Ecological Economics & Policy, Ecological economics

M.Sc. Social Ecological Economics & Policy, Deputy Director

Community of European Management Schools (CEMS) Masters in International Management (MIM), Climate Change Strategy Role Play

c. Future plans

I aim to pursue the topic of social ecological transformation, governance and democracy, post-growth society (degrowth, simplicity, sufficiency, stationary/steady state), alternative new economy.  The ideal will be to obtaining funding for post-doctoral and doctoral students in this area.

d. Selected recent works

Spash, C.L. (2012). 'New foundations for ecological economics'. Ecological Economics, 77 (May):36-47.

Spash, C.L. (2013). 'The shallow or the deep ecological economics movement?'. Ecological Economics, 93 (September):351-362.

Spash, C.L. (2014a). 'Better Growth, Helping the Paris COP-out?: Fallacies and Omissions of the New Climate Economy Report'. Vienna: Institute for Environment and Regional Development.

Spash, C.L. (2014b). 'The Politics of Researching Carbon Trading in Australia'. In: Stephan, B. and Lane, R. (eds). The Politics of Carbon Markets. London: Routledge, 191-211.

Spash, C.L. (2015a). 'Bulldozing Biodiversity: The Economics of Optimal Extinction'. Biological Conservation, In Press.

Spash, C.L. (2015b). 'Combining Social, Ecological and Economic Knowledge: How Critical Realism Can Help'. In: Lindner, U. and Mader, D. (eds). Critical Realism Meets Kritische Sozialtheorie. Bielefeld: Transcript Verlag, forthcoming.

Spash, C.L. (2015c). 'The Content, Direction and Philosophy of Ecological Economics'. In: Martínez Alier, J. and Muradian, R. (eds). Handbook of Ecological Economics. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar.

Spash, C.L. (2015d). 'The future post-growth society'. Development and Change, 46 (2):366-380.

Spash, C.L. and Aslaksen, I. (2015). 'Re-establishing an ecological discourse in the policy debate over how to value ecosystems and biodiversity'. Journal of Environmental Management, 159 (August):245-253.