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Power to the People - Energy in Europe over the last five Centuries

Kander, Astrid LU ; Malanima, Paolo and Warde, Paul (2013) In Mokyr (ed.) Princeton Economic History of the Western World
Abstract
Power to the People examines the varied but interconnected relationships between energy consumption and economic development in Europe over the last five centuries. It describes how the traditional energy economy of medieval and early modern Europe was marked by stable or falling per capita energy consumption, and how the First Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth century--fueled by coal and steam engines--redrew the economic, social, and geopolitical map of Europe and the world. The Second Industrial Revolution continued this energy expansion and social transformation through the use of oil and electricity, but after 1970 Europe entered a new stage in which energy consumption has stabilized. This book challenges the view that the... (More)
Power to the People examines the varied but interconnected relationships between energy consumption and economic development in Europe over the last five centuries. It describes how the traditional energy economy of medieval and early modern Europe was marked by stable or falling per capita energy consumption, and how the First Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth century--fueled by coal and steam engines--redrew the economic, social, and geopolitical map of Europe and the world. The Second Industrial Revolution continued this energy expansion and social transformation through the use of oil and electricity, but after 1970 Europe entered a new stage in which energy consumption has stabilized. This book challenges the view that the outsourcing of heavy industry overseas is the cause, arguing that a Third Industrial Revolution driven by new information and communication technologies has played a major stabilizing role.



Power to the People offers new perspectives on the challenges posed today by climate change and peak oil, demonstrating that although the path of modern economic development has vastly increased our energy use, it has not been a story of ever-rising and continuous consumption. The book sheds light on the often lengthy and complex changes needed for new energy systems to emerge, the role of energy resources in economic growth, and the importance of energy efficiency in promoting growth and reducing future energy demand.



Astrid Kander is professor of economic history at Lund University. Paolo Malanima is director of the Institute of Studies on Mediterranean Societies at the National Research Council in Italy. Paul Warde is reader in early modern history at the University of East Anglia and research associate at the Centre for History and Economics, Magdalene College, University of Cambridge.



Endorsement:



"Power to the People is a work of impressive scholarship, offering extensive and detailed quantitative information--much of which is new or not widely available--with readable explanations of the technical innovations that drove economic performance. It shows how energy use has long been central to Europe's economic growth, but that its role has been neither simple nor uniform."--William M. Cavert, University of Cambridge



"Power to the People is a meaningful contribution to our knowledge of the economic consequences of changes in energy and its use. The book provides a thoughtful and interesting historical approach to a timely question--can we continue to achieve economic growth and high living standards, particularly in poorer or developing countries, while decreasing energy use to reduce environmental impacts?"--Lynne Kiesling, Northwestern University (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Book/Report
publication status
published
subject
keywords
energy transition, energy intensity, economic development, power, development block, carbon dioxide emissions, global warming, agriculture
in
Mokyr (ed.) Princeton Economic History of the Western World
pages
472 pages
publisher
Princeton University Press
ISBN
9781400848881
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
20b40179-fa29-43a4-a770-4138f488b8d4 (old id 4172974)
date added to LUP
2013-11-20 15:20:20
date last changed
2016-10-26 11:03:02
@book{20b40179-fa29-43a4-a770-4138f488b8d4,
  abstract     = {Power to the People examines the varied but interconnected relationships between energy consumption and economic development in Europe over the last five centuries. It describes how the traditional energy economy of medieval and early modern Europe was marked by stable or falling per capita energy consumption, and how the First Industrial Revolution in the eighteenth century--fueled by coal and steam engines--redrew the economic, social, and geopolitical map of Europe and the world. The Second Industrial Revolution continued this energy expansion and social transformation through the use of oil and electricity, but after 1970 Europe entered a new stage in which energy consumption has stabilized. This book challenges the view that the outsourcing of heavy industry overseas is the cause, arguing that a Third Industrial Revolution driven by new information and communication technologies has played a major stabilizing role.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Power to the People offers new perspectives on the challenges posed today by climate change and peak oil, demonstrating that although the path of modern economic development has vastly increased our energy use, it has not been a story of ever-rising and continuous consumption. The book sheds light on the often lengthy and complex changes needed for new energy systems to emerge, the role of energy resources in economic growth, and the importance of energy efficiency in promoting growth and reducing future energy demand.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Astrid Kander is professor of economic history at Lund University. Paolo Malanima is director of the Institute of Studies on Mediterranean Societies at the National Research Council in Italy. Paul Warde is reader in early modern history at the University of East Anglia and research associate at the Centre for History and Economics, Magdalene College, University of Cambridge.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Endorsement:<br/><br>
<br/><br>
"Power to the People is a work of impressive scholarship, offering extensive and detailed quantitative information--much of which is new or not widely available--with readable explanations of the technical innovations that drove economic performance. It shows how energy use has long been central to Europe's economic growth, but that its role has been neither simple nor uniform."--William M. Cavert, University of Cambridge<br/><br>
<br/><br>
"Power to the People is a meaningful contribution to our knowledge of the economic consequences of changes in energy and its use. The book provides a thoughtful and interesting historical approach to a timely question--can we continue to achieve economic growth and high living standards, particularly in poorer or developing countries, while decreasing energy use to reduce environmental impacts?"--Lynne Kiesling, Northwestern University},
  author       = {Kander, Astrid and Malanima, Paolo and Warde, Paul},
  isbn         = {9781400848881},
  keyword      = {energy transition,energy intensity,economic development,power,development block,carbon dioxide emissions,global warming,agriculture},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {472},
  publisher    = {Princeton University Press},
  series       = {Mokyr (ed.) Princeton Economic History of the Western World},
  title        = {Power to the People - Energy in Europe over the last five Centuries},
  year         = {2013},
}