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World Dynamics (Second Edition)

By: Jay W. Forrester


World Dynamics represents a call to arms against this futility. It shows the opportunity for bringing the world of man into equilibrium with the forces of his environment while there still remains time and maneuvering room. Man throughout history has focused on growth in population, standard of living, and geographical boundaries. But in the fixed space of the world, growth must in time give way to equilibrium. Malthus had postulated food supply as the ultimate limiting factor, but Professor Forrester suggests that pollution, crowding, and depletion of resources can play equally critical roles. Industrialization may be a more fundamental threat than population. Due to limitations of the environment, the entire world may not be able to rise to the standard of living that has been set as an example by the industrialized countries. Goals and aspirations of all countries must be drastically readjusted as growth and expansion give way to world equilibrium. The book is the first step towards adapting the principles of System Dynamics to the behavior of the forces involved in the transition from growth to world equilibrium. A stable enduring world equilibrium may require a combination of social, economic, and technical changes that include such counterintuitive policies as reducing the present emphasis on food production and industrialization Since its publication, the book has received world-wide notice and has catalyzed debate over the necessity of achieving world equilibrium. In this second edition, an additional chapter discusses the importance of social limits to growth. Original first edition published in 1971, second edition published in 1973 and reprinted in 2018.