The Politics of Economics
A Seminar Series on The Political Role of Economics organized by Cléo Chassonnery-Zaïgouche, Raffaele Danna, Christina Laskaridis, Alice Pearson & Jack Wright

Economics affects politics, politics affects economics, and there is politics internal to economics. The Politics of Economics seminar series brings different perspectives together to discuss these dynamics and their normative and epistemic consequences. As the meaning of economics and politics has shifted over time, the series covers contemporary settings as well as historical moments on the role of economists and economics in policy. It explores the tensions and contestations of economic knowledge in the context of expert advice as well as political movements within the academy, and questions how these relate to a changing economy.

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Recordings of previous seminars can be found here. Recordings of previous webinars can be found on CRASSH YouTube Channel.

Webinar Programme Michaelmas Term : Quantification

4 November 2020 / Emmanuel Didier (CNRS, EHESS) / Are Social studies of quantification useful to understand the Covid pandemics? / 2-3pm GMT, online (register here)

8 December 2020 / Andrea Mennicken (LSE) / Uncertainty, Risk and the Politics of Numbers in Post-Pandemic Societies / 2-3pm GMT, online (register here)

Webinar Programme Easter Term: The politics of economics in the times of Covid19

In this rapidly changing context, how are economists’ positions as experts changing? Will the COVID-19 pandemic upend economic orthodoxy?  How does the lockdown affect politics and existing inequalities within the economics profession? How are these changes affecting the way economics engages public debate? How are they affecting the practice of economic policy?

Due to the lockdown, we are moving our seminars online for the coming term, and changing the format of our research network. In a series of webinars, we will explore the ways in which the politics of economics is changing as well as how it is reshaping our world. In each episode scholars will have an informal discussion on the COVID-19 pandemic and the ensuing economic crisis. We will invite them to share their thoughts both on the basis of their expertise and from the perspective of their current location. We will host one-hour webinars consisting of a conversation with one of our moderators  followed by  questions from our online audience. This is not about presenting research results but rather  sharing our latest thoughts and asking scholars whose expertise we trust to help us think through these strange times.

5 May 2020 / Elizabeth Popp-Berman (University of Michigan) in conversation with Mike Kenny (Cambridge) / Valuing life: statistics and the health/economy tradeoff? / 4pm BST, online

12 May 2020 / Erik Angner (Stockholm University) in conversation with Anna Alexandrova (Cambridge) / Epistemic humility and economics / 2pm BST, online (Register here)

19 May 2020 / Cornel Ban (Copenhagen Business School), discussion introduced by Christina Laskaridis (SOAS) / Trouble in the Church? Mainstream Macro and the Emergence of “Pandemic Economics”  / 4pm BST, online (Register here)

26 May 2020 / Will Bateman (Australian National University) in conversation with Jens van’t Klooster (KU Leuven) / Pandemic Easing as Sovereign Financing / 11 am BST, online

2 June 2020 / Jens van’t Klooster (KU Leuven) in conversation with Raffaele Danna (Cambridge) / The EU’s Technocratic Crisis Management / 4 pm BST, online (Register here)

25 June 2020 / Jana Bacevic (Durham) / Performing Social Science? Disciplines, Expertise, and the Corona Crisis / 11am BST, online (Register here)

7th July 2020 / Will Davies (Goldsmiths) in conversation with Alice Pearson (Cambridge) / Staying Alert: Cybernetic Policy Imagination and the Pandemic / 1pm BST, online (Register here)

All webinars are live-streamed on CRASSH YouTube channel.

Programme Lent Term

28 January 2020 / James Forder (University of Oxford) / Theoretical expertise and the weaponizing of the Phillips curve, 1970-1977 / 4:00-5:30, Seminar Room S2, Alison Richard Building

11 February 2020 / Hilary Cooper (consultant economist) & Simon Szreter (Cambridge) / Incentivizing an ethical economics / 4:00-5:30, Seminar Room S2, Alison Richard Building

25 February 2020 / CANCELLED Andrea Mennicken (LSE) / The Politics of quantification / 4:00-5:00, Seminar Room S1, Alison Richard Building

10 March 2020 / CANCELLED Cornel Ban (Copenhagen Business School) / Resilient capital: How the core of mainstream macroeconomics coped with the great recession / 4:00-5:30, Seminar Room S2, Alison Richard Building

Full programme Lent term in pdf here.

Programme Michaelmas Term

14 October 2019 / Caitlin Zaloom (New York University)/ Indebted: Student Finance, Social Speculation, and the Future of the US Family / 5:30-7:00, McCrum Lecture Theatre, Corpus Christi College / Organized in collaboration with MaxCam

29 October 2019 / Diane Coyle (Cambridge) / Economics for the Digital Age? / Discussion by Matthias Klaes (Buckingham) / 4:00-5:30, Seminar Room S2, Alison Richard Building

12 November 2019 / Steven Medema (Duke University, USA) & David Gindis (University of Hertfordshire) / The Politics of Law and Economics / Discussion by Ann Sofie Cloots (Cambridge)  / 4:00-5:30, Seminar Room S2, Alison Richard Building

CANCELLED / 3 December 2019 / Simon Szreter (Cambridge) / Incentivizing an Ethical Economics / 4:00-5:00, Seminar Room SG2, Alison Richard Building

Full programme Michaelmas term in pdf here.

The seminar originated as a CRASSH initiative in 2017-19 and in 2019/2020 will continue as a seminar series hosted by the Project Expertise under Pressure. Current convenors are Cléo Chassonnery-Zaïgouche (CRASSH, Expertise Under Pressure Project), Raffaele Danna (Cambridge, History), Christina Laskaridis (SOAS, Economics), Alice Pearson (Cambridge, Social Anthropology) & Jack Wright (CRASSH, QUALITY Project). The seminar series is currently funded by INET YSI, the Bennett Institute and the Cambridge-INET Institute.

Advisory Committee is composed of Anna Alexandrova (Cambridge, HPS), Simon Szreter (Cambridge, History), Mike Kenny (Cambridge, Bennett Institute), Diane Coyle (Cambridge, Bennett Institute), Giancarlo Corsetti (Cambridge-INET Institute, Economics) & Tiago Mata (UCL, STS).

Previous convenors are Kim Caspar Hecker (Cambridge, POLIS), Jens van’t Klooster (Cambridge, Philosophy), Aled Davis (Cambridge, POLIS), Ida A. B. Sognnaes (Cambridge, Land Economy), & Jostein Hauge (Cambridge, Institute of Manufacturing).