Great academic opportunities: 9 calls for papers, 5 fellowships and 2 summer schools

call for papersSee below a list of great academic opportunities: calls for papers, fellowships and summer schools focusing on various themes and topics in economic sociology and political economy, with December 12 – January 15 deadlines. Share this list with your colleagues and students. Good luck!!

Call for papers for conferences and workshops:

Summer Schools:

Various Fellowships:

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The early Karl Polanyi: Interpreting “Socialist Accounting”

karl-polanyiWe are all Polanyians now.
Karl Polanyi is probably one of the most famous theorists among social scientists today. It is almost impossible not to come across Polanyi’s citations and references in a very wide range of researches over the last two decades and erudite political debates following the 2008 financial crisis. His works – primarily, the canonical The Great Transformation (1944) – have constantly inspired students and scholars (including the writer of these lines) and intellectually propelled the development of disciplines – first and foremost, the rebirth and rise of Economic Sociology. A survey on the top ten books of the last 100 years conducted among more than 3,000 economists gave the prominent The Great Transformation second place.

In light of Polanyi’s prominence in the contemporary academic arena, especially in regards to his well-elaborated and commonly known thesis refuting the erroneous notion of the naturalness and universality of so-called “free-market” economy, it is very interesting to look at the early Karl Polanyi in order to trace his own intellectual journey in a unique socio-political context and scientific fields he lived in.
After witnessing in Hungary the flourishing of workers’ councils, the declaration of the Hungarian Soviet, and the success of counter-revolutionary “White Terror”, in 1919 Polanyi left for Vienna, where he learned about the local municipal socialism and took part in popular and academic polemics. In 1922 he wrote an article “Socialist Accounting” (“Sozialistische Rechnungslegung”) which allows to
 enrich our understanding of Polanyi’s thinking in new and surprising ways. Although this article has been occasionally summarized and discussed, it was not translated into English – until now. Therefore we are indebted to Ariane Fischer, David Woodruff and Johanna Bockman who took initiative and presented in the recent issue of Theory and Society a high-quality translation of “Socialist Accounting”; this was not an easy task because its text, in contrast to Polanyi’s other work, is wordy and seldom obscure.
Polanyi, which in the early 1920s worked within the debates of marginalist economics, has embraced accounting as a tool for socialism–a world in which the economy is subordinated to society. In this article, he laid out his model of a future socialism and sought to demonstrate that economic calculation was indeed possible in socialist regime. Explaining the historical critique of capitalism and the basic requirements of socialism emerging from this critique, Polanyi derived the two main goals of socialism: maximum productivity and social justice.
Accompanying this translation is the preface titled “Socialism and the Embedded Economy” by Johanna Bockman (George Mason University). In this thought-provoking analysis, Bockman sketches the historical framework of Polanyi’s article and its significance to the socialist calculation debate, the social sciences, and socialism more broadly. Based on her reading of the accounting and society that Polanyi offers, Bockman argues that scholars have too narrowly used Polanyi’s work to support the Keynesian welfare state to the exclusion of other institutions, have too broadly used his work to study social institutions indiscriminately, and have not recognized that his work shares fundamental commonalities with, and often unacknowledged distinctions from, neoclassical economics.
“Socialist Accounting” and Bockman’s interesting and illuminating commentary on this original text take us a step forward in understanding of Karl Polanyi’s intellectual scholarship as well as his view of a kind of socialism that he would remain committed to his entire life.
Polanyi concluded “Socialist Accounting” with great passion. Let us follow him; since we are all Polanyians now…  Are we? 

Humanity will only be free when it understands what it must pay for its ideals. Only then will humanity come to recognize that the realization of these ideals depends exclusively on humanity itself…. For only when the connection between the sacrifices to be made and the progress we hope to achieve along the path to the realization of our ideals becomes visible in a direct, verifiable form, specifiable down to the minutest quantities, can we as humans develop the drive to walk the upward path unwaveringly, to adapt this path to our capacities, and to proceed with joy and satisfaction.” (Polanyi 2016: 416).

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In Cryptography We Trust — Money as a Secularized Theodicy

in-cryptography-we-trust

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BITS & BRIEFS: Illusion of technological determinism // Working class fears losing // Racism shaped welfare policy // Growth is not “natural”

Once again — especially worth reading (and sharing) articles:

technological-determinism

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Corporate Governance — for the society and the environment

Our societies are all scarred by Milton Friedman’s creed that “the social responsibility of business is to increase its profits”; our economies are all wounded by corporations’ obsessive pursuit for short-term profit maximization; regrettably, we all pay the price of dodgy and excessive corporate risk taking at the expense of long-term reasonable wealth creation and distribution.
“After the financial crisis, there has been considerable debate about the role of corporations in society. It has become broadly accepted that corporations – particularly the world’s largest publicly traded corporations – need to be governed with respect for the society and the environment. This is because corporations are dependent on the broader institutional and systemic framing for their long-term survival and because the most pressing of society’s problems cannot be solved without a contribution from corporations or by regulation alone. However, this consensus has not yet been reflected in mainstream corporate governance models that have been narrowing since the 1970s in order to put the maximisation of shareholder value at the centre of corporate attention.”
This is an opening paragraph of a (open-access) report “Corporate Governance for a Changing World” – the outcome of a global consultation of over 260 academics, policy makers, practitioners and civil society activists as part of the Purpose of the Corporation Project, aimed at elaborating desired principles of corporate governance to cope with the destructive consequences of neoliberal-economistic-business thinking in the face of the challenges of the 21st century political economy and business climate.
The fruits of the discussions recently held at the Creating Sustainable Companies Summit have been synthesised into this report (by  Jeroen Veldman, Filip Gregor and Paige Morrow), presenting options available to corporations, investors and policy-makers to create an institutional framework for corporate governance that supports a broad understanding of corporate purpose, fosters a focus of corporate strategy on long-term sustainable value, and allows the alignment between corporate strategies and the broader interests of society by taking account of systemic risks such as growing inequality and climate change.
You are welcome to delve into this report, join its cause and spread the word.

shareholder value maximization

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The Closing of the Mind

Landscape With Figures. Artwork by George Tooker

“Landscape with Figures” by George Tooker (1992)

What is advertised as a great opening is a great closing.”
Allan Bloom, The Closing of the American Mind (1987), p. 34

“Landscape with Figures” by George Tooker (1992)

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BITS & BRIEFS: Neoliberalism as the secular political theological paradigm // Capitalism stifles democracy // Slave trade and US private prisons // Commercialisation of LGBTQ subcultures

This time — especially worth reading (and sharing) articles:

evil-neoliberalismdevel

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Great academic opportunities: 10 calls for papers, 2 job openings and a visiting fellowship

call for papersSee below a list of great academic opportunities: calls for papers and job openings in various themes and topics in economic sociology and political economy, with November 15 – December 15 deadlines. Share this list with your colleagues and students. Good luck!!

Calls for Papers:

Job openings:

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BITS & BRIEFS: What would Keynes say? // Commodity called “food” vs. feminine agriculture // Imagine that all work is honored // Why so few economists are studying inequality?

capitalism-economy-sociology

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Disentangling Neoliberalism: the key concepts

Neoliberalism has become an omnipresent term. Due its increasing pervasiveness into academic, political and media discourses, some perceive neoliberalism as an omnipotent phenomenon that explains everything, while others see it as a vague buzzword that hardly means something. Surveying this blog, for example, under the tag of ‘neoliberalism‘ one will find a very wide and diverse range of books, papers and posts dealing with a long series of topics and issues. A common denominator, though, of most of those items would be the period they cover — from the 1980s onwards. However, ‘neoliberalism’: what is it about?
neoliberalism-key-conceptsNeoliberalism The Key Concepts, by Matthew Eagleton-Pierce (SOAS, University of London) is a timely and remarkable intellectual endeavour to quest and introduce the essence and workings of neoliberalism. But as Eagleton-Pierce emphasizes: “the purpose of this book is not to engage in defining ‘neoliberalism’… Rather, my aim is to explore and interrogate a range of histories, meanings and practices that cluster around this pervasive label” (p. xiii).
Eagleton-Pierce’s important project provides a critical guide to a vocabulary that has become globally dominant over the past thirty years. The language of neoliberalism both constructs and expresses a particular vision of politics, economy, society and everyday life. Despite the popularity and diffusion — or probably because of them — the concepts used by neoliberalism or associated with it often remain confusing, since they are the product of contested narratives. Moreover, the neoliberal lexicon often conceals and obscures  rather than elucidates and clarifies. In this book, Eagleton-Pierce does an excellent job in decoding it.
In a very accessible way, demonstrating a profound competence with a comprehensive interdisciplinary body of knowledge, the book analytically depicts and dissects 44 key terms of neoliberalism, such as: Adjustment, Competition, Entrepreneurship, Flexibility, Freedom, Global, Growth, Market, Stakeholder, State, TradeWelfare, and more.
One of notable merits of the book is the enriching of the arguments in regards to neoliberal ideas, institutions and practices proposed by various scholarships. But at the same time, applying an eclectic approach, the book masterly avoids the traps of simplicity or over-complication. The result is a well-crafted and insightful resource that elegantly encompasses many intellectual voices, themes, and schools of thought, presenting cross-references and an extensive bibliography for further enquiries.
Students, researchers and everyone who are puzzled by the common words associated with neoliberalism and interested in understanding the socio-political dynamics and morphology of the neoliberal economy and economics will certainly find Neoliberalism: The Key Concepts a valuable and beneficial study. This recommended volume is structured as a list of discrete entries, but it easily could be read as a complementary narrative; a proficient account offering an exploration of the multifaceted relationship between language, logics and the mutually embedded State-Economy-Society.

Open access to the table of contents and the introductory chapter.

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