Geoffrey Heal

Geoffrey Heal is Garrett Professor of Public Policy and Corporate Responsibility and Professor of Economics and Finance at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business. His research fields include the management of risks by financial markets, the application of mathematical modeling techniques in economic theory, and the interaction between society and its natural resource base. Dr. Heal has been working to formalize and operationalize the concept of sustainability and develop an interdisciplinary group of leading social and biological scientists committed to research on the interface between the biological and social sciences. His recent books include Valuing the Future, Nature and the Marketplace, Topological Social Choice, Sustainability: Dynamics and Uncertainty, and Environmental Markets.

Papers Published in World Economics:

Biodiversity in the Marketplace

What is the nature of biodiversity as an economic commodity and why does it matter? How would its conservation contribute economically to our well-being? In this article, Geoffrey Heal considers three issues: Why is biodiversity important from an economic perspective? What kind of commodity is it? Does our usual economic mechanism, the market system, have the capacity to appreciate the economic value of biodiversity? The author first tries to characterize biodiversity from an economic perspective, and then considers the capacity of our main economic institutions to realize the value of biodiversity and ensure that it is treated in a way commensurate with its importance.

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