About the authors

Aart Heesterman is a retired senior lecturer from the department of Economics at the University of Birmingham, England, with a degree in political and social sciences from the University of Amsterdam. For some years, he has been a civil servant in the Ministry of Economic Affairs in the Hague. He has taught and published in the areas of economic planning, econometrics and mathematics and at one stage managed the degree course in economic planning which the University of Birmingham then offered. One of his books on economic planning models was translated into Polish. In retirement, he set himself the task of refreshing his science background, reading oceanography and climatology textbooks, and of properly relating climate change to economic theory. This first led to the publication of a paper on cost benefit analysis and then to this book.

Wiebina Heesterman has a PhD in Law from the University of Warwick on human rights, those of children in particular, as well degrees in information science and IT. She worked in a non academic capacity at Warwick Law School, which takes a 'law in context' approach to teaching and research. This happy circumstance and the presence of the many students from developing countries reinforced her interest in issues, such as the unequal position of women and girls in many parts of the world. What began as a copy editing exercise to make the text more accessible to readers from disciplines other than economics, resulted in a book which draws attention to the human rights and sociological implications of decisions in the economic sphere.

Both authors are Dutch, but have been living for some time in the United Kingdom. Both are fully conversant with the latest climatological and environmental research. Due to visits to various Third World countries, such as Tanzania and Zimbabwe, where Wiebina assisted in the creation of human rights databases, they became used to a perspective on north-south relations other than that of transient tourists. Meeting former staff and students of Warwick Law School made it possible for them to visit shanty towns and take part in debates on land rights. They also spent some time in the Caribbean and South-East Asia, visiting friends and relations. There too, they saw with their own eyes, how poverty is being aggravated by erratic weather patterns. The experience has reinforced their conviction that solving the climate crisis depends on energy efficiency as well as technological innovation.