Narrating Green Economies in the Global South
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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Original versionForum for Development Studies. 2020, 1-23. 10.1080/08039410.2020.1858954
This paper discusses how persisting, powerful narratives inform and shape the green economy in the Global South. Green economy strategies often evolve around market-based and technological solutions to the planetary crises, particularly in industrialized countries. In developing countries with rich resource bases, however, green transitions often imply various forms of modernization of the ways in which natural resources are managed, utilized and controlled. This, I argue, is a result of the process in which the green economy agenda is shaped by elites through narratives that feed into and inform green economy discourses and policies in resource-rich countries in the Global South. While much literature discusses variegated green economy schemes in the Global South and their outcomes, this paper discusses how these practices and policies are driven by powerful narratives that essentially shape green economy agendas. I argue that a persisting neo-Malthusian narrative of resource scarcity, degradation and overpopulation co-exists with a resource abundance narrative, holding that pristine natural resources are vast, but under threat, and that capital, ‘know-how’ and technology can protect and develop these resources while at the same time accumulate economic growth. As a result, the green economy in the Global South is often narrated and implemented under a discourse of modernization of natural resource management
© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.