Rock Valley College

PAIC Committee Book Group Chapter 2

Chapter Two:  See the Big Picture

  1. Why does Kate Raworth begin this chapter with a cast list of characters from Shakespeare’s play The Tempest?
  2. According to Kate Raworth, the entire “stage” for the 20th century economic play we are all currently in is comprised entirely of a “closed and complete system” that was invented in a diagram by Paul Samuelson.What is this image?
  3. The heart of this chapter is the difference between the two scripts, characters and plays.Do you think that this difference is fair?Does the metaphor help you to understand economics better?How do the two plays differ from each other?
  4. Here is the cast of the “new play”, in order of appearance.For each, discuss the new approach that Kate Raworth advocates within this new model of the Embedded Economy:
    • Earth
    • Society
    • The Economy
    • The Household
    • The Market
    • The Commons
    • The State
    • Finance
    • Business
    • Trade
    • Power
  5.  If you conceive of the earth as a “source” and a “sink”, how does that affect your approach to consumption and the use of resources?Why is it impossible to “throw out” anything?
  6. Fill in the blank:“…the economy’s fundamental resource flow is not a roundabout of money but, rather, a one-way street of _____________.”
  7. Is society embedded in the economy, or is the economy embedded in society? Discuss.
  8. Matching:  link the type of product with the four components of any economy:
    1. Household private goods
      Market public goods
      Commons "core" goods
      State co-created goods

  9. “When Adam Smith, extolling the power of the market, noted that ‘it is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner’, he forgot to mention…….”?
  10. Multiple choice.“The market only values what is _____________.”
    a. long-term
    b. life-affirming
    c. priced
    d. popular
  11. While discussing the necessity of regulating the market (and those who attempt to remove those regulations), Kate Raworth claims, “there is no such thing as deregulation, only reregulation.”What does she mean here?
  12. Can you give an example of a natural commons, a cultural commons, and a digital commons?

  13. According to Kate Raworth, what makes the goods produced in a commons different from those produced in the market?

  14. Kate Raworth argues that the state should aim to win which Oscar at the Academy Awards?Why?

  15. According to Kate Raworth, which entity generally takes greater risks in innovations for new products, the state or the market?Give examples.

  16. Do financial markets and speculation create stability?What is their function?Is the stock market (or any speculative trading) a true reflection of the economy?

  17. What hypocrisy does Kate Raworth note about current wealthy countries which demand free trade and free flow of capital from poorer countries?

  18. Which economic actors currently have the most power?the least?

  19. Do you think that even if everything Kate Raworth says is true, we have the ability to change the current neoliberal economic “script”?