Josep Burcet Llampayas

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Industrial State of Mind


By Industrial State of Mind I mean a set of economic paradigms, cognitive structures and visions about economic activity and a clear cut set of attitudes about economics.

Such a state of mind conforms to the prevalent predispositions of many economic, social and political agents leading them to act with a characteristic "demarche".

The current forms of economic life and their political and social consequences are profoundly inspired by the Industrial State of Mind.


Hypothesis that
 I propose 
to the Transit  participants 

1 The Industrial State of Mind has allowed industrialization but, by the end of the XX Century it acts as a barrier that impairs access towards more advanced forms of economic activity
2 The Industrial State of Mind is deeply rooted in all the regions where industrialization has taken place. It impregnates not only economic institutions but the rest of social, political and cultural institutions
3 As soon as the Industrial State of Mind has been overcome and replaced by more powerful views and attitudes, the new economic activity will be able to flourish, producing higher standards of economic output, far beyond any precendent

Some assumptions of the Industrial State of Mind

Correlative Characteristics of  the Next Sate of Mind

On relation to resources

Long term eventual scarcity of raw materials doesn't matter. Next year profits are the issue ('unconcerned')


As far as material resources are limited, we must drive ours economies towards zero growth ('concerned')

Industrial production must shift towards more abundant materials. Nevertheless, new economic activity must be mainly based on nonmaterial resources, which are not limited but infinite. As resources for New Economic Activity (NEA) are unlimited, we may intend indefinite economic growth.

On the notion of wealth

The real production of wealth can only come from manufacture of materials

The future well-being of industrial regions, currently menaced by recession, must be rooted on re-industrialization

Wealth production derives mainly form scale economies

Work on  nonmaterials will produce  more wealth than industrial production.

The future well-being of industrial regions, currently menaced by recession, must gradually be shifted to NEA.

New dimensions in the production of wealth will be attained if we undertake some qualitative changes in the current forms of economic activity

On perception of nonmaterial reality

Only tangible reality must be taken into account.

Intangible reality is vague, indefinite,  mildly existent and probably inconsequential

As far as intangible reality is the main precursor of our forms of activity, it is the most important aspect of real wolrd

On economic thinking

Industrial production is far more crucial than communication.

Knowledge must serve industrial production. The contrary is unthinkable.

The whole economy acts as  a material engine and must be driven in the same way.

Monetary systems are in fact the same as machinal material paraphernalia.

Economic growth can't develop indefinitely at rate higher than 5 %.

Communication is far more crucial than industrial production.

Industrial production must bear the creation of better conditions for further production of new knowledge.

The whole economy is a nonmaterial system which requires specific forms  of management substantially different from management of material machinery.

Monetary systems are more subtle than machinal material paraphernalia.

The economy can grow as fast as 5 % or more in the years to come and will be able to develop even faster afterwards. 

On models dealing with reality

The "truth" must only be found using deterministic approaches.

More efficient and rational way for the production of new economic and social reality is to plan almost everything using causal models

The human phenomena can't be fully understood with deterministic models.

Indetermination and chaos are primary sources for the production of breathing reality. Planning is only a mean to deal with most mechanical and secondary aspects in the production of new reality

On the nature of men

Manpower acts in the same way that material machines do and must be treated accordingly.

Only "hard" facts count. Emotions, feelings, desires and other aspirations must be subordinated to facts.

Manpower is substantially different to material machines and must be treated accordingly.

Emotions, feelings, desires and other human aspirations must also be considered as "hard facts".

On predatory prone behavior

Personal power, growth and relevance depends on how much you are able to predate Personal power, growth and relevance depends on how much you are able to create

Transit Papers
Chapter 4

Josep Burcet
Despatx de Sociologia
Barcelona, March 1992