The Centre for the Understanding of Sustainable Prosperity is an ESRC research centre, directed by Prof Tim Jackson. Our guiding vision for sustainable prosperity is one in which people everywhere have the capability to flourish as human beings—within the ecological and resource constraints of a finite planet. Our work explores not just the economic aspects of this challenge, but also its social, political and philosophical dimensions. We address the implications of sustainable prosperity at the level of households and firms; and we explore sector-level and macro-economic implications of different pathways to prosperity.  We are paying particular attention to the pragmatic steps that need to be taken by enterprise, government and civil society in order to achieve a sustainable prosperity.

Work Programme

The CUSP work programme is organised around five core themes: (M)eanings and moral framings of the good life; the role of the (A)rts and culture in delivering prosperity; (P)olitical and organisational dimensions of sustainable prosperity; (S)ocial and psychological understandings of the good life; and (S)ystems analysis to explore narratives of sustainable prosperity. The findings of our MAPSS research themes are drawn together through a rich portfolio of engagement across business, government and civil society.Detailed information about our MAPSS-Framework can be accessed through our Projects page.


The Centre takes the form of a rich international network, drawing together expert partners from academic and non-academic institutions as co-producers of the work programme. Detailed information can be found on our Network page.


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