In the Media

NPR MARKETPLACE: What might America’s next economy look like?

05. 09. 2024

This report originally aired on NPR.

Over the last four decades, America’s approach to economics remained largely unchanged. Across both sides of the political aisle, neoliberalism increasingly became the dominant economic framework that shaped public policy. Yet the ideological model has sparked sharp criticism around its effectiveness in leading to economic stability, as well as its role in widening inequality. The debate has led many to reimagine the American economy and put forth an alternative blueprint for the future. 

Enter the concept known as the Overton window — the range of policies that the public is willing to consider and accept. It explains how once-dismissed “pie in the sky” ideas become mainstream. The Overton window widened after the 2008 financial collapse when many questioned and challenged the status quo. The paradigm shifted again during the COVID-19 public-health crisis as politicians rushed to create measures that would provide people with much needed aid.  

As the country slowly transitions into life after the peak of the pandemic, the question remains whether another shift in the Overton window is on the horizon. Natalie Foster, President of the Economic Security Project, is one of leading architects behind a new economic policy who believes so. She is the author of the recently published book, “The Guarantee: Inside the Fight for America’s Next Economy.”  

“Marketplace Morning Report” host David Brancaccio spoke with Foster about the feasibility of the economic framework, and how close it is to becoming a reality. The following is an edited version of their conversation.