There was a passage in Blue Mars where Sax Russell listed some sociological/economic indicators for use on Mars.

Country Futures Index, Real Value Gauges, Costa Rica Comparisons

Do such indicators actually exist, or are they an invention of Robinson?

1 Answer 1


They're made up. Just try Googling for those terms, and you won't find what you'd expect to find if they were actual indicators in current use. Unusually for SF authors, Robinson postulates advances in soft sciences like economics and sociology as well as in hard sciences.

  • Actually, what he's postulating in soft sciences are not really advances. ;) What he's trying to sell as science is civic engineering (like soft communism - which is of course impossible to be anything but communism) and other socio-political set-ups, of which all - as the saying goes - have been tried. They are just reworded in new jargon old, sometimes really old ideas.
    – AcePL
    Feb 20, 2015 at 9:28
  • 3
    @AcePL - that's no different than any other tech he put forward, whether social, physical, or medical. Most ideas are old. They work when we learn the details to make them work.
    – Radhil
    Feb 20, 2015 at 16:01

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