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Hasan Ozbekhan, 86, Economist Who Helped Found Global Group, Dies

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Hasan Ozbekhan, 86, Economist Who Helped Found Global Group, Dies

By JEREMY PEARCEFEB. 26, 2007

Hasan Ozbekhan, a Turkish-born economist and management expert who helped found the Club of Rome, a group of thinkers who came together to examine unwieldy global problems like food shortages and overpopulation, died on Feb. 12 in Philadelphia. He was 86.

The cause was a pulmonary embolism, his family said.

In the early 1970s, Mr. Ozbekhan (pronounced UHZ-beh-kahn), who taught at the University of Pennsylvania and applied the field-of-systems theory to global problems, helped inspire the group of planners, diplomats, scientists and academics who came together as the Club of Rome. He wrote a paper, “The Predicament of Mankind,” that became an influential core document of the group, addressing issues of energy, overpopulation, depletion of resources and environmental degradation.

Alexander N. Christakis, a former colleague in the Club of Rome, said Mr. Ozbekhan’s writings constituted “a forward-looking document” and argued that global problems were “strongly interconnected and that any attempts to deal with them independently would simply not work.”

Mr. Ozbekhan, who was the club’s director of research and a member of its executive committee, later resigned, but the organization continues and now operates from Hamburg.

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Mansur Hoda

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Mansur HodaMansur Hoda: (1930–2001) was born in a middle class Muslim family in eastern Indian state of Bihar. Mansur Hoda as a student, had worked as a research volunteer for the Intermediate Technology Group. After working for Indian Railway for 10 years, he joined Bihar government as Inspector of Factories.

Mansur Hoda was greatly influenced by E F Schumacher of Small Is Beautiful fame. Mansur Hoda was absolutely convinced by the Schumacher's concept of Intermediate Technology or Appropriate technology - something between the sickle and the combine harvester, the hoe and the tractor - as the only feasible solution to the problems of massive unemployment that haunted India and other developing countries.[1]

E. F. Schumacher in an article published in The Observer, had strongly advocated for the 'intermediate technologies' focusing on the need and skills possessed by the people of developing countries. He rejected the conventional aid policies which were based on trasfer of modern large-scale technologies to poor countries lacking technical skills and mass market for them. This article crated lots of interest and encouraged few enthusiasts like George McRobie, Alfred Latham-Koenig and Mansur Hoda along with E. F Schumacher to create an advisory centre to promote the use of labour intensive techonologies. In 1966, the ntermediate Technology Development Group (ITDG) - now known as Practical Action - was born.[2]

Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 November 2011 22:54 Read more...
 

Ernst Friedrich Schumacher

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Ernst Friedrich "Fritz" Schumacher

Ernst Friedrich Schumacher "Fritz" (16 August 1911 – 4 September 1977) was an internationally influential economic thinker, statistician and economist in Britain, serving as Chief Economic Advisor to the UK National Coal Board for two decades.[1] His ideas became popularized in much of the English-speaking world during the 1970s. He is best known for his critique of Western economies and his proposals for human-scale, decentralized and appropriate technologies. According to The Times Literary Supplement, his 1973 book Small Is Beautiful: a study of economics as if people mattered is among the 100 most influential books published since World War II.[2] and was soon translated into many languages, bringing him international fame. Schumacher's basic development theories have been summed up in the catch-phrases Intermediate Size and Intermediate Technology. In 1977 he published A Guide For The Perplexed as a critique of materialist scientism and as an exploration of the nature and organization of knowledge. Together with long-time friends and associates like Professor Mansur Hoda, Schumacher founded the Intermediate Technology Development Group (now Practical Action) in 1966.

Early life

Schumacher was born in Bonn, Germany in 1911. His father was a professor of political economy. The younger Schumacher studied in Bonn and Berlin, then from 1930 in England as a Rhodes Scholar at New College, Oxford,[1] and later at Columbia University in New York City, earning a diploma in economics. He then worked in business, farming and journalism.[1]

Last Updated on Tuesday, 15 November 2011 22:54 Read more...
 

Ilya Prigogine

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Ilya Prigogine (Russian: Илья́ Рома́нович Приго́жин, Ilya Romanovich Prigozhin) (25 January 1917 – 28 May 2003) was a Russian-born naturalized Belgian physical chemist and Nobel Laureate noted for his work on dissipative structures, complex systems, and irreversibility.

Biography

Ilya Prigogine

Prigogine was born in Moscow a few months before the Russian Revolution of 1917. His father, Roman (Ruvim Abramovich) Prigogine, was a chemical engineer at the Moscow Institute of Technology; his mother, Yulia Vikhman, was a pianist. Because the family was critical of the new Soviet system, they left Russia in 1921. They first went to Germany and in 1929, to Belgium, where Prigogine received Belgian citizenship in 1949.

Prigogine studied chemistry at the Free University of Brussels, where in 1950, he became professor. In 1959, he was appointed director of the International Solvay Institute in Brussels, Belgium. In that year, he also started teaching at the University of Texas at Austin in the United States, where he later was appointed Regental Professor and Ashbel Smith Professor of Physics and Chemical Engineering. From 1961 until 1966 he was affiliated with the Enrico Fermi Institute at the University of Chicago. In Austin, in 1967, he co-founded what is now called The Center for Complex Quantum Systems. In that year, he also returned to Belgium, where he became director of the Center for Statistical Mechanics and Thermodynamics.

Last Updated on Friday, 26 August 2011 22:25 Read more...
 

Gregory Bateson

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Gregory Bateson

Gregory Bateson (9 May 1904 – 4 July 1980) was an English anthropologist, social scientist, linguist, visual anthropologist, semiotician and cyberneticist whose work intersected that of many other fields. He had a natural ability to recognize order and pattern in the universe. In the 1940s he helped extend systems theory/cybernetics to the social/behavioral sciences, and spent the last decade of his life developing a "meta-science" of epistemology to bring together the various early forms of systems theory developing in various fields of science. Some of his most noted writings are to be found in his books, Steps to an Ecology of Mind (1972) and Mind and Nature (1979). Angels Fear (published posthumously in 1987) was co-authored by his daughter Mary Catherine Bateson.

Biography

Bateson was born in Grantchester in Cambridgeshire, England on 9 May 1904 - the third and youngest son of [Caroline] Beatrice Durham and of the distinguished geneticist William Bateson. The younger Bateson attended Charterhouse School from 1917 to 1921, obtained a BA in biology at St. John's College, Cambridge in 1925, and continued at Cambridge from 1927 to 1929. Bateson lectured in linguistics at the University of Sydney in 1928. From 1931 to 1937 he was a Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge, spent the years before World War II in the South Pacific in New Guinea and Bali doing anthropology. During 1936-1950 he was married to Margaret Mead[2]. At that time he applied his knowledge to the war effort before moving to the United States.

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 August 2011 23:42 Read more...
 
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