Zero-sum economy, not?

Do you know of any research/source that prove the economy is not a zero-sum game? And if the economy is about creating value, then how is paper money created to trade with this increased value, in a sustainable way, without any negative impact on inflation rate and currency value?
If the economy isn't a zero-sum game, then how to quantify the net value created by the economy to prove it's increasing continuously?

Answer:
I'll answer your question in reverse. The "net value" as you put it, is a function of technological advancement. Technological advancement has two effects:

1) It creates cool new stuff to buy (plasma TVs), and stuff that increases our standard of living (air conditioning, antibiotics, open heart surgery, viagra).

2) It makes it cheaper to produce commodities, which means that people have more disposable income, which then causes businesses to invent MORE cool new stuff.


The fact that this cool stuff exists means that the economy is not a zero sum game.

A zero-sum game means that there's a fixed amount of wealth in the world.
There IS a fixed amount of land, and to some extent raw materials in the world. But through labor (which adds wealth), technological advancement and capital (which adds wealth), we can create more wealth and get better at using (or substituting) the scarce resources that we have.
The evidence is very clear that the world economy is not a zero-sum game. If it was, then we would still be using spears and eating over an open fire.

Technology is the key to understanding why this is not so. You invent an idea, and it can be dispersed all over the planet. In addition, that idea can get incorporated into other ideas, for even better products.

The cell phone is just a collection of other people's ideas!

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