Is Growth Dead? Yes, No, Maybe!

The world economy has been growing at a steady pace for decades and yet in recent years a number of countries have experienced negative or no growth. Is the current lack of growth a temporary blip until normal levels resume or is something more significant happening?

For the first time in many years the assumption that economic growth will continue year-after-year in developed economies is being questioned.

Economic growth has, in the past, been driven by innovations such as steam power, electricity, running water, the internal combustion engine and, in recent years, by computers, the internet and mobile phones.

The argument against the continued march of growth is two-fold: first, the drivers of the future are not likely to be as effective as the drivers of the past.

Second, even if such drivers do exist there are significant barriers such as globalisation, education, inequality and debt that will restrict growth in the decades ahead.

In essence, the ability of future innovations to drive the economy coupled with the, not insignificant, challenges that lie ahead raise doubts about whether or not historic growth levels are achievable.

On the face of it technology, in the form of computers and the emerging use of machines and robots in the workplace, is playing a part in reducing growth levels as traditional jobs are replaced.

The parts of the economy that are recovering are not creating enough jobs, as the economy has developed the ability to recover without creating the traditionally expected jobs.

There is no doubt that significant and lasting change is taking place, as the world of work is restructured and reorganised in a way not previously experienced.

The solution, however, is not to fight against technology or restrict its use but to realise the significance of what is happening and complement the changes that are taking place.

SO, the traditional link between economic recovery, growth and job creation is dead or at least in serious trouble and our best hope lies in working with technology to shape a new world.

What about you?

Do you think growth is dead?

Look forward to hearing your stories and feedback in the comments below.