Andrew Simms

Andrew Simms is an author, political economist and campaigner.

His books include The New Economics, Ecological Debt: Global Warming & the Wealth of Nations, Tescopoly: How One Shop Came Out on Top and Why it Matters, Do Good Lives Have to Cost the Earth? and  Cancel the Apocalypse: The New Path to Prosperity. Most recently he co-authored Economics: A Crash Course, a beginner’s guide to the subject from a heterodox perspective.

Andrew co-founded the New Weather Institute and coordinates the Rapid Transition Alliance. He is a research associate at the Centre for Global Political Economy, University of Sussex, and was Policy Director of NEF (the New Economics Foundation) for many years, where he co-authored and published the original Green New Deal, and established its Climate Change, Energy and Interdependence Programme. He is also the assistant director of Scientists for Global Responsibility. He co-founded the Green New Deal group in 2007, the climate campaign that ran until 2017, and devised Earth Overshoot Day. He is a regular contributor to The Ecologist, and has often contributed to the Guardian, BBC and multiple other media. His current campaigns include Badvertising, Car Free Megacities and in 2018, with his colleague Peter Newell, he proposed the Fossil Fuel Non Proliferation Treaty, now a major international campaign.

A political economist and environmentalist, Andrew studied at the London School of Economics and has written widely on the political economy of both global and local economies, and sat on the board of the Transition Network. He coined the phenomenon of ‘Clone Town Britain’ and led NEF’s work on the ‘Great Transition’. New Scientist magazine called him a ‘master at joined up progressive thinking.’ 

Key campaigns & links

Recent journal articles

How Did We Do That? Histories and Political Economies of Rapid and Just Transitions (2020) with Peter Newell, in New Political Economy

Towards a fossil fuel non-proliferation treaty (2019) with Peter Newell, in Climate Policy

Short films


Badvertising: Polluting Our Minds & Fuelling Climate Chaos (2023) with Leo Murray, Pluto Press, London.

Economics: A Crash Course (2019), with David Boyle, Quarto, London.

Cancel the Apocalypse: The New Path to Prosperity (2013) Little Brown, London.

‘A cornucopia of alternative policy options to defy inertia and despair… not just the starry-eyed proposals of a policy wonk but…schemes which have been successfully tried and tested.’ Financial Times

Eminent Corporations: The Rise and Fall of the Great British Corporation (2010) with David Boyle, Constable, London.

‘A new business history that impresses.’ Financial Times

The New Economics: A Bigger Picture (2009) with David Boyle, Earthscan, London.

‘A Joy to see… The New Economics builds on the strong British moral and intellectual tradition of Ruskin, Belloc, Chesterton and Schumacher.’ Prof. Herman Daly

Do Good Lives Have to Cost the Earth? (2008) Andrew Simms with Joe Smith, Constable & Robinson, London

Tescopoly: How One Shop Came Out on Top and Why it Matters (2007) Constable, London

‘Simms’s work succeeds as activism as well as analysis’ The Times

Ecological Debt: Global Warming and the Wealth of Nations (2005) (Second Edition: 2009) Pluto, London

‘Essential reading’ Chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Selected reports*

(* most multiple authors)

Book chapters & essays

Neoliberalism: the break-up tour

(with Sarah Woods, in Neoliberalism, Theatre and Performance, Routledge, 2021)

Museum of Rapid Transition: museums in a world facing existential crisis

(in Museum-iD, 2019, Issue 23)

Reimagining Britain – a new approach to environmental issues

(in The Alternative – towards a new progressive politics, Biteback, 2016)

What if money grew on trees? Asking the big questions about economics

(multiple entries, Ivy Press, 2013)

National Gardening Leave

(in Time on our side: why we need a shorter working week, nef, 2013)

The power and promise of 2012 – Turning Super Saturdays into Happy Mondays

(in London 2012: how was it for us? Lawrence & Wishart, 2013)

On the magic bullet

(With Victoria Johnson in: Atlas: geography, architecture and change in an interdependent world, Black Dog publishing, 2012)

A Green New Deal – poverty reduction and economic stability in a carbon constrained world

(in Climate change and energy insecurity – the challenge for peace, security and development, Earthscan, 2009)

Growth is failing the poor: the unbalanced distribution of the benefits and costs of global economic growth

(with David Woodward in: Flat world, big gaps – economic liberalisation, globalisation, poverty & inequality, United Nations & Zed Books, 2007)

Ecological debt – the economic possibilities for our grandchildren

(in Sovereign debt at the crossroads – challenges and proposals for resolving the third world debt crisis, Oxford University Press, 2006)

The economic problem of sustainable governance

(in Governance for Sustainable Development – A foundation for the future, Earthscan 2005)

Real World Environmental Outlook

(in Real world economic outlook – the legacy of globalisation, debt and deflation, Palgrave MacMillan, 2003)

Trade, investment and sustainable development

(in Earth Summit 2002 – A new deal, Earthscan, 2000)

Environment and Energy: the Ongoing Dilemma

(in UNIDO – 30 Years of Industrial Development 1966 – 1996, UNIDO 1996)

If not then, when? Non-governmental organisations and the Earth Summit process

(in Environmental Politics, vol 2, no 1, Spring 1993)