A global Fordian compromise? - and what it would mean for the transition to sustainability

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


At first, it may seem as if the sustainable transition would force us to make a cynical trade-off between (a) the immediate needs of the global poor and (b) the future needs of the global rich. Crucial objectives, such as climate stability, are commonly held to be unattainable if the rest of the world would come to enjoy present Western living standards. Challenging this pessimistic analysis, this essay explores the possibility of opening up advanced technological paths to environmental sustainability by means of a "global Fordian compromise". Built around trade reform, such a compromise would resemble its historic namesake by not seeking individual moral reform, as emphasized in environmental citizenship theory, but rather by drawing on the momentum of existing socio-economic dynamics.


  • Rasmus Karlsson
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Political Science


  • Innovation policy, International political economy, Green political theory, Sustainable development, Trade policy
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)190-197
JournalEnvironmental Science and Policy
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Publication categoryResearch