Small is Beautiful – the ideas of E F Schumacher

Economics with Justice Lecture, 6th October, 2012

Barbara Wood

Barbara Wood“Economics is not an exact science; it is in fact, or ought to be, a branch of wisdom”. So wrote economic thinker and visionary E. F. Schumacher forty years ago in his remarkable book Small Is Beautiful – A Study of Economics as if People Mattered.

Dr Schumacher held that the West’s belief in progress coming from profits was deeply flawed. He argued that such thinking led to gross economic inefficiency, environmental pollution and inhumane working conditions, adversely affecting our health and well being.

Schumacher’s ideas are as fascinating and relevant today as they were when written. In her talk, the first in the new series of Economics with Justice lectures, his daughter Barbara Wood presented her father’s thinking afresh, sharing with us his vision of a world which could be so very different.

Barbara Wood is the third of E.F. Schumacher’s eight children and his eldest daughter. She is a graduate in Economics and History from Bristol University and also holds degrees in Theology.

Barbara is author of Alias Papa – A life of Fritz Schumacher, first published in 1984 but with a new edition published in June 2012