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Reflections on the Auroville Economy from a Mainstream Economic Perspective
Daniel Grings

I. A Few Fundamental Principles of Economic Theory
1. Scarcity
2. Utility
3. Marginalism
4. Politico-Economic Systems
5. Money
II. The Auroville Economic System
6. The Auroville System in Theory
7. Problems With the Theory
8. The System in Practice
9. Conclusion


Here are some of my observations on the Auroville economy. In the first section I briefly touch on a
few points fundamental to understanding any economic system, while also explaining how
Auroville has a unique perspective on some of them.
Then I describe how The Mother wanted Auroville to function, and explain some of the problems I
see with this proposed system, followed by a brief look at the reality.
My criticism comes from a perspective that favors a market economy. Personally, I subscribe to the
Austrian school of economics, which is "heterodox" rather than mainstream. However, very few of
the differences between Austrian and mainstream views are directly relevant to Auroville (most are
on monetary and fiscal matters or on general methodology). The one important difference is that the
Austrian school is much more suspicious of centralized planning and control. Subscribing to a
heterodox school also means that I am very open to challenging mainstream views. I just feel that
one should attempt to understand what one is challenging.
I personally strongly support Auroville's efforts to practice the Integral Yoga. However, I also
believe that the Auroville economic system (neither the current actual one nor the one proposed by
The Mother) is necessary for or conducive to it.