The point of departure around 1970: Overabundance and discontent

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Around 1970 anti-authoritarian groups rose up against industrialisation and the development of welfare. They were the vanguard of a broader societal sentiment. At the end of the 1980s environmental problems were at the core of social and political debate Despite increasing worries the pattern of consumption barely changed. Contrasting the monitor for 1970 with that of 2010, this chapter sketches the growth of material welfare and the development of quality of life. Smoking, overweight and unemployment became the new societal challenges. The domestic consumption of energy continued to grow. In this period pressure on natural capital, both domestic and foreign, increased dramatically. The Netherlands continued to be dependent on foreign lands for important material flows - in some cases to an extreme extent. 80% of Dutch grain, for example, was still imported. These developments led to shifts in the sustainable development of the Netherlands to foreign countries. The following chapters analyse the societal dynamics in the in the chains of agriculture and foods (Chap. 18), construction and building materials (Chap. 19) and energy and plastics (Chap. 20)

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationWell-Being, Sustainability and Social Development
Subtitle of host publicationThe Netherlands 1850-2050
EditorsHarry Lintsen, Frank Veraart, Jan-Pieter Smits, John Grin
Place of PublicationCham
Number of pages22
ISBN (Electronic)9783319766966
ISBN (Print)9783319766959
Publication statusPublished - 14 Jun 2018


  • Internationalisation
  • Monitor
  • Natural capital
  • Protest
  • Protest movements
  • Sustainability
  • Well-being


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