British economist Kate Raworth developed the model of Doughnut Economics as a framework that aims to create a sustainable and socially just economy by ensuring that human well-being stays within the ‘doughnut’ of ecological ceilings and social foundations.
This framework proposed a paradigm shift away from an economic model of constant growth measured by the GDP and recognizes that human prosperity depends on the well-being of both people and planet.
The ecological ceilings encompass nine thresholds that should not be exceeded to prevent further environmental degradation. These thresholds include: climate change, ocean acidification, chemical pollution, nitrogen and phosphorus loading, freshwater withdrawals, land conversion, biodiversity loss, air pollution and ozone layer depletion
In turn, the social foundations consist of social goals inspired by the UN Sustainable Development Goals, such as food security, health, education, income and work, peace and justice, political voice, social equity, gender equality, housing, networks, energy and water.
This interactive diagram helps illustrate the concept.
While Doughtnut Economics is a relatively new concept, several cities across Europe and Australia are already experimenting with this theory.
Find out how Amsterdam, Berlin, Brussel, Melbourne and Sydney are applying the principles of Doughnut Economics to rebuild after the COVID-19 pandemic and increase their resilience.