Ecological economist, Professor of Environmental Studies at York University and the author of Managing Without Growth
Dr. Peter Victor is an economist who has worked on environmental issues for over 40 years as an academic, consultant and public servant. He was one of the founders of the emerging discipline of ecological economics and was the first President of the Canadian Society for Ecological Economics. By extending input-output analysis, he was the first economist to apply the physical law of the conservation of matter to the empirical analysis of a national economy. His most recent books are Managing without Growth. Slower by Design, not Disaster (Edward Elgar, 2008) and The Costs of Economic Growth (ed) (Edward Elgar, 2013). Currently, he is collaborating with Prof. Tim Jackson on the development of ecological macroeconomics.
Dr. Victor is a Professor in Environmental Studies at York University and from 1996 to 2001 was Dean of the Faculty of Environmental Studies. This followed several years as Assistant Deputy Minister of the Environmental Sciences and Standards Division in the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. Prior to that he was a principal of VHB Consulting and Victor and Burrell Research and Consulting where he undertook many influential policy-related economic studies in Canada and abroad.
Dr. Victor has served on numerous boards and advisory committees and has appeared as an expert witness before various Commissions. Currently he is Chair of the Greenbelt Council of Ontario, a full member of the Club of Rome, and a member of Advisory Committee on Environmental Statistics for Statistics Canada, the Academic Advisory Panel of TruCost, the Board of the David Suzuki Foundation, the Advisory Board of the New Economics Coalition, and the editorial advisory board of several academic journals.
As an economist who has focused on environmental challenges, I've long recognized that in my field it often takes a major crisis before cherished but unsatisfactory theories finally give way to new thinking. So it is with how economists think about growth and the environment. The tragic irony is that all this growth in the past few decades has done little to improve happiness in the 'developed' world. Meanwhile, their growing economies consume the ecological space desperately needed by poorer countries where growth still promises real gains in well-being.