“Slow down or perish”: decrease, back to school theme in HEC

Monday, the business school of Jouy-en-Josas invited Thimothée Parrique, researcher in ecological economy and specialist in decrease and post-growth.


“The first time I heard, at a conference, from decrease, I was a second year of economy students at the University of Versailles-Saint-Quentin. I was your age , and I laughed. I said to myself: who is this plouc, this puppet who has never taken a single economy class? Since then, I did a lot of way. “

It is with this abyss that the economist Timothée Parrique, 33 years old, author of slow down or perish. An economy of decrease (Seuil, 2022, 20 euros) began his conference in front of an audience of students and employees of HEC Paris, Monday, September 19. An hour to expose the themes of his book released on September 16, already out of stock: impossible green growth, false promises of economic growth, the post-growth social project …

The economist currently stationed at the University of Lund (Sweden) was also invited to provide a course on “the foundations of decay” to the 380 first -year students. Since 2021, all students have followed an 18 -hour seminar of lessons on climate change – a course set up in response to a pressing request from students.

“Social and Well -being justice”

speak of decrease in the school of the economic elite, which forms each year an army of young people to make companies even more profitable? A funny paradox that the economist quickly evacuates, who assumes going “where we invite him”. “As a university, I participate in the public debate. My role during these few hours in HEC is to equip students with a theoretical framework to which they do not have access. They will be led to make decisions in ten years , they therefore need to have all the analytical frameworks in their possession. If I come, it is for the students. I do not dilute anything of the content, and I tell exactly the same thing to my students in Sweden and my research “. The “theoretical framework” in which his intervention is written, he gives a simple definition: “decrease is a reduction in production and consumption to lighten the ecological footprint, planned democratically in a spirit of social justice and well-being “.

Born in the 1970s, the idea of ​​decrease took off in particular thanks to French intellectuals like Serge Latouche (economist), Paul Ariès (political scientist), André Gorz, (philosopher and journalist). In the United States, the report on “the limits to growth” (1972) by Dennis and Donella Meadows, MIT researchers, is a bestseller sold to 12 million copies and translated into 37 languages. For the first time, a new modeling technique simulates twelve prospective scenarios on industrial production, population growth, food production The scarcity of resources and pollution. The conclusion: the exponential growth of production and the population exceeds the planetary limits.

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/Media reports.