U of Siena Dept. of Economics Working Paper No. 338
21 Pages Posted: 31 Oct 2002
Date Written: December 2001
Though the recent process of globalisation of international markets succeeded in sustaining the economic growth of the countries that actively participated in this process, the available empirical evidence suggests that it was accompanied by a world-wide increase of environmental degradation and economic inequality. Therefore, there is a growing concern that these features of the globalisation process may jeopardise its social and environmental sustainability. Both environmental and social dimensions of sustainability played a central role in the definition of sustainable development as originally suggested by the Brundtland Commission. The ensuing literature, however, focused almost exclusively on the environmental aspects of sustainability. This paper intends to develop the original, more comprehensive, approach to sustainable development in order to get a deeper understanding of the role that globalisation played and could play in achieving social and environmental sustainability. In particular, it is here investigated how the process of globalisation may affect the relationship between per capita income on one side and inequality (Kuznets curve) or environmental deterioration (environmental Kuznets curve) on the other side. From the analysis carried forward in the paper, some remarks are drawn on a few basic conditions for sustainable globalisation.
Keywords: globalisation, sustainable development, inequality, environment, Kuznets curve, environmental Kuznets curve
JEL Classification: F02, F18, F43, O13, O15
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation