One explores the reasons behind and the future for worldwide democratization; the other suggests the “growth is good” mentality of modern society is leading to the demise of the human race.
Both are ideas that will be vital to world order in coming years. For that reason, Samuel Huntington, author of The Third Wave: Democratization in the Late Twentieth Century, and Herman Daly and John Cobb, co-authors of the book For the Common Good, will share the 1992 award.
Huntington, Eaton professor of the science of government and director of the John M. Olin Institute for Strategic Studies at Harvard University, says the shift to democracy by more than 30 countries between 1974 and 1990 is the most important political trend in the late 20th century. He also analyzes the political, economic and cultural factors that will decide whether the movement continues and offers specific suggestions for initiating and carrying out reform.
In For the Common Good, Daly and Cobb claim the current economic system preaches the benefits of growth without taking into account the environment’s inability to sustain it. If current trends continue, they say, the world’s ecosystem soon will be exhausted and unable to sustain life. They propose shifting from an economic system based on individual self-interest to one that focuses on community and considers both future generations and non-human populations.
Daly is a former senior environmental economist for the Latin American and Caribbean Region of the World Bank. Cobb is Ingraham professor of theology at the School of Theology at Claremont.
The 1992 Grawemeyer Award was the first to be shared.