Reconciling Ecology and Economics: 2013 Program Details

Caribou heardAugust 13 - 16, 2013

Bozeman, Montana

Directed by Terry Anderson

This colloquium, co-sponsored with Liberty Fund, Inc., will explore how self-interest and altruism manifest themselves through markets and, consequently, how they influence the connection between humans and nature. Participants will explore the connection between ecology and economics using Hayek’s insights regarding markets as processes and prices as information, and the property rights approach that stresses the importance that property rights play in making humans accountable for the cost of using scarce resources. Because ecosystems are dynamic processes in the same way that markets are, understanding the nexus between human nature and institutions is important for understanding how free societies utilize nature’s bounty.

This conference would repeat a program developed last year for this co-sponsor for a target conferee group of academic ecologists, economists, and political scientists. The first version was held in April 2012, and the discussion confirmed the intended goal that ecologists and economists would engage in a productive conversation based on a shared framework of analysis. At the forefront was the question of whether the ecosystem or the market is in need of a conscious force to keep them going and whether in both cases, the interplay of multiple elements and intricate systems of feedback loops maintain a delicate, yet robust balance absent any central planning. There have been some reading changes and session reorganization based on the experience of the first conference.

This event is closed to the public, and conference attendees can access the workshop materials by the links below.

Conference Materials