“I don’t mind being called an idealistic idiot,” he told Reuters, with reference to a philosophy he summed up as “the macro-economic text-books are works of fiction”.
Undaunted by the non-believers, he will continue to spread the word and in Davos addressed the assembled money-makers on the importance of “gross domestic happiness”, as opposed to gross domestic product.
His new economics aspire to demonstrate “real economic well-being” through sustainable living, a focus on the local, not the global, and a more equal distribution of wealth.
The foundation’s latest survey of National Accounts of Well-being, based on around 40,000 interviews across Europe, found overworked, tired, bored and lonely Britons were near the bottom of the league.
Increasingly, they might be ready to give new economics a try. To that extent, Wallis’ time has come.