The Idea that Changed the World: Accretion, the “Way”, the Universe and Know How


  • Brian Hilton


This paper deals with socio-economic evolution. It considers the main drivers of change and stability in the three main stages of socio-economic evolution of mankind the hunter gatherer, agricultural and capitalist. It sees the energy driving change these ages as coming from the access mankind chose to make in each to different sources of stored value, respectively, direct by being embedded in nature, direct by cultivating and indirectly by exploiting nature's stored value.. This is done against the backdrop of the stage we are just entering where man is working to use his capacity to learn and understand to put mankind in a sense outside time by being exploiting the energy embedded in the fundamental eternal forces of the universe, The fundamental position taken is that to understand the process of socio-economic evolution one needs to focus on on process not form. It is what changes on what time scales by what means that matters not what anything look like during its inevitably short existence in a stable form. This is not so much in terms of its underlying reality but in the way we are slowly beginning to see such things from a moral, emotional and physical perspective.



How to Cite

Hilton, B. (2007). The Idea that Changed the World: Accretion, the “Way”, the Universe and Know How. Proceedings of the 51st Annual Meeting of the ISSS - 2007, Tokyo, Japan, 51(2). Retrieved from



Organisational Transformation and Social Change