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The rise in inequality has been explained with reference to organized groups and the lobbying of the financial sector. This article argues that the image of politics as organized combat is contradicted by empirical evidence on lobbying in the United States, and does not travel well to Europe. The power of finance does not operate through organized political influence. Rather, politics in the interest of capital unfolds as a structural feature of advanced economies over time. Tellingly, at the height of the financial crisis, one of the most promising strategies of institutions seeking government support was not organizing for combat, but collective inaction. Our challenge, then, is to explain how the power of finance has built up and is playing out in creating inequality. A more structural, less agency-focused perspective highlights how the rise of finance has been supported by actors that few would accuse of being finance-friendly, such as the European center-left parties and consumers. Reconceptualizing the power of finance has important implications for political solutions to rising inequality.

The literature on financial regulation has typically emphasized the role of the powerful financial industry in shaping regulatory outcomes. However, capture theories cannot explain the prominence of financial consumer protection in post-crisis reform agendas. By contrast, this paper argues that, despite their collective action disadvantage, a polymorphous network of civil society organizations was able to gain momentum after the financial crisis and to influence the financial reform process. In this policy window, where decision-makers were looking out for an alternative source of expertise, a transnationally connected civil society network successfully raised the issue of consumer protection on reform agendas in tandem with public entrepreneurs and on the back of a popular backlash against big finance. This argument will be explored through a comparative study of the impact of transnational pressures on policy-makers in Europe and the US in the immediate aftermath of the crisis. In the conclusion, the paper discusses the substance of the financial reforms that have been undertaken.

in Sociological review Publication date 2011
BLOCK Anders
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An important philosopher and anthropologist of science, Bruno Latour has recently outlined an ambitious programme for a new sociological empiricism, in continuation of his actor-network-theory (ANT). Interrogating issues of description, explanation and theoretical interpretation in this ‘sociology of associations’, we argue that certain internal tensions are manifest. While Latour's philosophy of social science demands an absolute abandonment of theory in all its forms, proposing instead to simply ‘go on describing’, he is in practice employing versions of common sense explanation and pragmatic-constructivist theory to make ends meet. The core of this tension, we claim, can be located in Latour's meta-theoretical commitments, in effect obscuring important ways in which human subjects employ things, effects and symbols beyond their simple, ‘empirical’ existence. To illustrate these claims, we deploy the example of how morality works in social life, and coin the term quasi-actant, in allusion to the Latourian actant, to better understand such processes. Our overall criticism of ANT is immanent, aiming at the re-introduction of what we dub ‘virtual theory’ into Latourian empiricism, thus further strengthening what remains one of the most promising contemporary attempts to reinvigorate the sociological enterprise.

in World Politics Review Publication date 2014-07
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The financial industry is commonly described as one of the most influential in politics. The numbers certainly support this impression. In terms of lobbying expenditures in the United States, the banking sector outspent even the health care sector. Few industries have comparable resources available and have been able to establish such a strong institutional presence. In many countries, top bankers and high-ranking public officials meet frequently; revolving doors between the two worlds are common; and the technical complexity of financial regulation makes consultation with the industry at all levels of decision-making a necessity. Accordingly, commentators in the media and academia warn about conflicts of interest and undue influence. [First paragraph]

in Actes de la recherche en sciences sociales Publication date 2015
RENISIO Yann
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Si l’histoire des sciences a souligné tant l’importance que la diversité des formes de coopération entre savants, une grande part des écrits contemporains concernant « l’interdisciplinarité » semble toutefois relever de l’invective ou du vœu pieux. Parmi les études empiriques qui ont rendu compte des proximités, échanges ou circulations entre domaines de connaissance ainsi que du cloisonnement plus ou moins fort du travail intellectuel, une écrasante majorité se fonde sur des matériaux construits à partir des produits finalisés de la recherche. Cette focale sur les publications, qui réduit le champ d’observation aux objets les plus nobles de l’activité scientifique, ne permet pas d’accéder aux conditions de possibilité des pratiques interdisciplinaires qui résident en premier lieu dans la structuration des différents sous-champs du champ scientifique ainsi que dans les trajectoires sociales, scolaires et professionnelles de ses agents. [Premier paragraphe]

in Journal of Civil Society Publication date 2017
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Dodd–Frank, the financial reform law passed in the United States in response to the 2008 financial crisis, established the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a new federal regulator with the sole responsibility of protecting consumers from unfair, deceptive, or abusive practices. This decision marked the end of a highly politicized reform debate in the US Congress, in which proponents of the new bureau would normally have been considered to be much weaker than its opponents. Paradoxically, an emerging civil society coalition successfully lobbied decision-makers and countered industry attempts to prevent industry capture. What explains the fact that rather weak and peripheral actors prevailed over more resourceful and dominant actors? The goal of this study is to examine and challenge questions of regulatory capture by concentrated industry interests in the reform debates in response to the credit crisis which originated in the US in 2007. The analysis suggests that for weak actors to prevail in policy conflicts over established, resource-rich opponents, they must undertake broad coalition building among themselves and with influential elite allies outside and inside of Congress who share the same policy goals.

in Journal of European Public Policy Publication date 2017
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This article examines interest group conflicts surrounding the financial transaction tax (FTT) debate in the European Union (EU). Specifically, it focuses on the advocacy efforts of EU-based financial industry groups at different stages of the policy debate. The article provides a detailed description of changes to the post-crisis regulatory environment and points to public salience as important factor that can constrain business power. Much in line with the existing literature, industry groups did not fare very well under conditions of high salience and public pressure during the agenda-setting stage. However, this article also shows that in order to get back on its feet, the financial sector lobby had to employ a combination of quiet and noisy politics during later stages of the policy process. As soon as the contextual conditions provided by the financial crisis started to fade away, industry groups were able to bounce back by using a framing strategy that linked their arguments against an FTT to broader societal goals, by disseminating scientific evidence and by building coalitions with business groups outside of finance in order to water-down the proposed directive.

in Review of International Political Economy Publication date 2013-11
JOHNSON Juliet
MÜGGE Daniel
SEABROOKE Leonard
GRABEL Ilene
GALLAGHER Kevin
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An anniversary issue provides an inescapably inviting opportunity to reflect on the past, evaluate the present, and contemplate the future. Eschewing the self-congratulatory rhetoric of traditional anniversary celebrations, we have devoted this 20th anniversary issue of RIPE to contributions that critically examine the academic discipline of international political economy, focusing on our collective challenges and limitations as much as on our achievements. As every author knows, it is the thoughtful, constructive, and above all critical review that ultimately pushes us to produce better scholarly work. The global financial crisis mandates such a reassessment, as did the fall of communism that birthed this journal. [First paragraph]

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This article examines the role of non-financial interest groups in EU financial regulatory decisionmaking. While regulatory capture theories clearly helped identify the causes for the incrementality in spite of the major shock the 2008 crisis had caused, this article will consider a range of regulatory policy initiatives that do not neatly conform with this theory. I examine the extent to which nonfinancial groups are able to have their preferences met in the making of three different consumer policies: the Mortgage Credit Directive (MCD), stricter regulations of retail investment products (PRIPs/KID) and the reform of EU level supervisory structures. By employing a process-tracing approach based on qualitative interviews to analyze political responses to the 2008 financial crisis, the article demonstrates that newly mobilized groups could translate key advocacy goals into policy by deploying counter-expertise and co-operating with policy-makers in some cases but not in others.

The principal component of a European social model was considered to be convergence of social outcomes toward the top. However, the latest economic and social trends are no longer characterized by a steady narrowing of the gap between the more and lesser advanced countries. While all European countries were affected by the economic crisis of 2008 and a coordinated response was put into place in 2009, since 2010, we see a growing divergence between two groups of countries in Europe. The first group, mainly in the North of Europe, concentrated around Germany, Austria, the Nordic countries, along with certain Eastern European countries having close economic ties to Germany, has steadily emerged from the crisis and resumed a positive economic and social path. The second group, however, comprised mainly of the Southern and Eastern periphery, remains stuck in negative economic and social situations following the crisis. This chapter demonstrates the initial economic convergence, followed by a stark divergence in certain economic and social outcomes after the crisis of 2008. It reviews the various explanations for these divergences. Finally, it considers the political outcomes of this economic and social dualization. We argue that despite the seemingly uniform rise of populist anti-EU challengers across Europe, these challengers differ significantly in the grievances they raise. Radical right parties are dominant in the center, while radical left parties outperform the radical right in the periphery, a dynamic that constitutes a second, political, dualization of Europe.

in Journal of Economic Perspectives Publication date 2015-10
FOURCADE Marion
OLLION Etienne
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In this essay, we analyze the dominant position of economics within the network of the social sciences in the United States. We begin by documenting the relative insularity of economics, using bibliometric data. Next we analyze the tight management of the field from the top down, which gives economics its characteristic hierarchical structure. Economists also distinguish themselves from other social scientists through their much better material situation (many teach in business schools, have external consulting activities), their more individualist worldviews, and their confidence in their discipline's ability to fix the world's problems. Taken together, these traits constitute what we call the superiority of economists, where economists' objective supremacy is intimately linked with their subjective sense of authority and entitlement. While this superiority has certainly fueled economists' practical involvement and their considerable influence over the economy, it has also exposed them more to conflicts of interests, political critique, even derision.

Many of today’s public policies aimed directly or indirectly at regulating the behaviors of individuals and organizations provide for the implementation of a certain type of instrument which can be qualified as a label. They share some features with what the literature tends to identify as proper standards (e.g., they aim at defining the best practices, they may represent – at least – a symbolic resource for those who adopt them), but they also have some peculiarities, which we will present here. In this paper, we propose to analyze the characteristics and dynamics underpinning this mode of governance as part of a study of two particular public policy domains chosen for their complementarity as well as their contrasts: the fight against obesity, and sustainable consumption. In both of these fields, labels have become a preferred mode of governance – and even, we might say, a kind of standard. Based on Foucault (2004), we emphasize the fact that the logics of distinction, which regulate utilities and sanctions in a particular social field, are instrumentalized by public policy as an incentive to the actors to deliberately take action whose value is endorsed by a label. Hence, the aim and outcome of this mode of governance are not the uniformity of a field, but the ongoing creation of increasingly demanding labels that only some of the participants can hope to obtain.

Pendant le long après-guerre, les crises n’étaient qu’un phénomène conjoncturel et une exception par rapport au régime normal de croissance et de progrès social. De nombreux concepts fondamentaux des sciences sociales – la démocratie telle que nous la comprenons habituellement, avec ses marchés encastrés, ses électorats éclairés, ses élites politiques bienveillantes et ses alliances progressistes qui permettent de résoudre des problèmes – semblent inadaptés pour comprendre les bouleversements sociaux actuels. Dans le sillage de la crise financière de 2008, l’on constate l’effondrement des alliances majoritaires, le retour du populisme à grande échelle, tant dans le monde occidental qu’au niveau mondial, et l’irruption de protestations sociales chaotiques et parfois violentes. Les forces qui constituaient l’ossature d’un capitalisme articulé à l’État providence semblent obsolètes face aux élites financières et politiques qui, paradoxalement, sont à la fois déconnectées du cadre national mais aussi parfois directement liées aux mouvements nationalistes et populistes. Des politiques exploitant le ressentiment, d’autres fondées sur les identités locales, et de nouvelles politiques de classe interagissent sous des formes que nous ne comprenons pas encore. Ainsi, que le néolibéralisme engendre aujourd’hui l’autoritarisme n’est pas le moindre des paradoxes. En même temps, ces processus ne sont pas tous nouveaux et doivent être replacés dans le contexte des clivages socio-économiques et culturels produits par l’avènement du néolibéralisme dans les années 1970. Ce volume réunit des positions défendues par des universitaires spécialisés en histoire économique, en sociologie économique et en économie politique, sous la forme de brèves notes de réflexion préparées pour la Conférence du cinquième anniversaire du MaxPo, les 12 et 13 janvier 2018, à Paris.

in Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization Publication date 2015-07
SENIK Claudia
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This paper looks at the association between wage satisfaction and other people's pay, based on a matched employer–employee dataset. Three notions of reference wage appear to be being of particular importance: (i) the median wage level in one's firm, (ii) the level of wage of similar workers in the region, and (iii) the top 1% wage in one's firm. The first one triggers a signal effect, whereby all employees – especially young ones – whatever their relative position in the firm, are happier the higher the median wage in their firm, holding their own wage constant. The second and the third ones are sources of relative deprivation, i.e. workers’ satisfaction decreases with the gap between their own salary and these reference categories. These findings are based on objective measures of earnings as well as subjective declarations about wage satisfaction, awareness of other people's pay and reported income comparisons.

in La Vie des Idées Publication date 2017-02
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L’ouvrage Le négationnisme économique. Et comment s’en débarrasser de Pierre Cahuc et André Zylberberg a suscité un vif débat dans la presse et dans le monde académique. Son objectif est de débusquer les insuffisances, les méconnaissances, les erreurs et les dénis des chercheurs et des acteurs publics qui critiquent la science économique, et plus particulièrement de ceux qui critiquent son courant dominant, l’économie dite mainstream. Sont plus particulièrement visés les économistes critiques, en particulier les « économistes hétérodoxes » ou « atterrés », mais aussi des figures intellectuelles issues d’autres disciplines scientifiques (Pierre Bourdieu, Michel Onfray, Dominique Méda, Axel Kahn), des PDG (Jean-Louis Beffa, Louis Gallois), des hommes politiques (Michel Rocard, Daniel CohnBendit, Barbara Romagnan) ou des journaux (Alternatives économiques). [Premier paragraphe]

in La Vie des idées.fr Publication date 2018-03
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Luc Boltanski et Arnaud Esquerre invitent à repenser les mécanismes sociaux de production de la valeur et soulignent l'importance du fait de constituer des collections dans la dynamique des inégalités qui caractérise nos sociétés. En s’interrogeant sur les formes et enjeux de la marchandisation et de la formation des prix dans nos sociétés, ils montrent que l'insertion dans une collection enrichit un bien.

in Revue française de socio-économie Publication date 2015
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Nous étudions l’impact de la financiarisation sur la montée des inégalités au sein de dix-huit pays de l’OCDE de 1970 à 2011 et nous mesurons les rôles respectifs de diverses formes de financiarisation : la croissance du secteur financier, la croissance de l’un de ses sous-composants, les marchés financiers, la financiarisation des entreprises non financières et celle des ménages. Nous testons ces impacts grâce à des modèles de régression de panel à effets fixes sur données agrégées au niveau national. Nous utilisons comme variables dépendantes l’indice de Gini de la base SWIID, les mesures d’inégalité interdéciles de l’OCDE et les parts des revenus touchées par les fractions les mieux rémunérées grâce à la World Top Income Database. Nous montrons d’abord que la part du secteur de la finance dans le PIB est un moteur important de l’inégalité dans le monde, qui explique de 20 % à 40 % de son accroissement entre 1980 et 2007. Lorsque nous décomposons cet effet du secteur financier, nous constatons que cette évolution est principalement tirée par l’augmentation du volume des transactions boursières et par le montant des actions détenues à l’actif du bilan des banques. Au contraire, la financiarisation des entreprises non financières et celle des ménages ne jouent pas un rôle important. Sur la base de ce test d’inégalité, nous interprétons donc la financiarisation comme étant essentiellement un phénomène de marchéisation, défini comme la croissance de l’activité sociale consacrée au commerce des titres sur les marchés financiers.

in Economic Sociology (European Electronic Newsletter) Publication date 2013
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The article offers the author's insights on their study on financial industry mobility. The author describes a case-study which involved an equity derivatives trading-room head and his staff who were given bonuses of 10 and 7 million euros, respectively. He raises the concern on whether the immobile attempt to prevent the mobile in their activities to stop exploitation. Results show that people who are open to moving main assets or teams submit to retainment devices more than other employees.

L’article de Chemin et Wasmer (2009) tente d’établir l’inefficacité de la politique de réduction du temps de travail dite des « 35 heures » en matière d’emploi en exploitant une expérience naturelle : l’Alsace-Moselle a subi une réduction du temps de travail de moindre ampleur que le reste de la métropole car elle a pu intégrer dans son calcul deux jours fériés additionnels qui existaient pour des raisons historiques. L’article de 2009 propose pour cela de montrer d’une part que les salariés de ces trois départements ont connu une réduction de la semaine de travail significativement moindre que ceux du reste de la France et d’autre part que cette différence n’a pas été accompagnée par plus de chômage ou moins de créations d’emploi. Lors d’une réplication de cet article, nous avons découvert une erreur de code informatique dans la définition des entreprises de plus de vingt salariés qui fausse sensiblement les résultats. Sa correction ainsi qu’une meilleure prise en compte du caractère frontalier de la région concernée infirment les hypothèses de l’article. La réduction du temps de travail, telle qu’elle est mesurée par l’enquête Emploi, a été aussi importante en Alsace-Moselle que dans le reste de la France. Ainsi, notre propre travail jette des doutes sur la validité de cette expérience naturelle pour évaluer les effets de la réduction du temps de travail sur l’emploi.

in Journal of Cultural Economy Publication date 2016-03
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Drawing on Pierre Bourdieu's theory of aesthetic judgment, this text offers an inductive account of financial reasoning inside a trading room. Driven to maximise bank profits, trading room operators do not find ‘one best way’. Rather they choose among several possible winning strategies: mathematical arbitrage, economic analysis, chartist analysis. These strategies differ sharply from one another in their conception of the market, method, proximity to scholarly knowledge, and legitimacy. We show that the choice of one method depends on a system of tastes and distastes that are both historical – depending on individuals’ social and educational background – and relational – depending on the individual's relative position within the trading room viewed as a field.

in economic sociology_the european electronic newsletter Publication date 2018-03
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Twenty years ago, Michel Callon edited The Laws of the Markets, a groundbreaking volume that substantially redefined economic sociology by resetting the relationship between sociology and economics (Callon 1998). Many articles in economic sociology at that time started (and still do today) with sharp criticism of neoclassical economics. The latter was censured for being overly simplistic and complex, overly reductionist and irrelevant. [First lines]

in Slowpolitix Publication date 2015-04-07
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À l’automne 2012, au pied des plus grandes places financières de la planète, le mouvement social #OCCUPY a dénoncé avec le slogan « We are the 99%! » conjointement le poids excessif de la finance et l’enrichissement des plus riches. Parfois les mouvements sociaux se trompent de diagnostics. Parfois ils ont raison. Qu’en est-il ? Financiarisation et montée des inégalités sont-elles liées et, si oui, dans quel sens ?

in Focaal — Journal of Global and Historical Anthropology Publication date 2019
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In order to explore factors conditioning the political quietude of Ukrainian labor, this article analyzes ethnographic data collected at two large enterprises: the Kyiv Metro and the privatized electricity supplier Kyivenergo. Focusing on a recent labor conflict, I unpack various contexts condensed in it. I analyze the hegemonic configuration developed in the early 1990s, at the workplace and at the macro level, and follow its later erosion. This configuration has been based on labor hoarding, distribution of nonwage resources, and patronage networks, featuring the foreman as the nodal figure. On the macro scale, it relied on the mediation by unions, supported by resources accumulated during the Soviet era and the economic boom of the 2000s. The depletion of these resources has spelled the ongoing crisis of this configuration.

Dodd-Frank, the US financial reform law passed in response to the 2008 financial crisis, established the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), a new federal regulator with the sole responsibility of protecting consumers from unfair, deceptive, or abusive practices. This decision marked the end of a highly politicized reform debate in the US Congress, involving lobbying from business associations and civil society groups, in which proponents of the new bureau would normally have been considered to be much weaker than its opponents. Paradoxically, an emerging civil society coalition successfully lobbied decisionmakers and countered industry attempts to prevent industry capture. What explains the fact that rather weak and peripheral actors prevailed over more resourceful and dominant actors? The goal of this study is to examine and challenge questions of regulatory capture by concentrated industry interests in the reform debates in response to the credit crisis which originated in the US in 2007. The analysis suggests that for weak actors to prevail in policy conflicts over established, resource-rich opponents, they must undertake broad coalitionbuilding among themselves and with influential elite allies outside and inside of Congress who share the same policy goals.

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The Future of the World is devoted to the intriguing field of study which emerged after World War Two, futurism or futurology. Jenny Andersson explains how futurist scholars and researchers imagined the Cold War and post Cold War world and the tools and methods they would use to influence and change that world. Futurists were a motley crew of Cold War warriors, nuclear scientists, journalists, and peace activists. Some argued it should be a closed sphere of science defined by delimited probabilities. They were challenged by alternative notions of the future as a potentially open realm. Futurism also drew on an eclectic range of repertoires, some of which were deduced from positivist social science, mathematics, and nuclear physics, and some of which sprung from alternative forms of knowledge in science fiction, journalism, or religion. These different forms of prediction laid very different claims to how accurately futures could be known, and what kind of control could be exerted over what was yet to come. The Future of the World carefully examines these different engagements with the future, and inscribes them in the intellectual history of the post war period. Using unexplored archival collections, The Future of the World reconstructs the Cold War networks of futurologists and futurists. [Publisher's abstract]

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La prospective est un objet pertinent pour comprendre les savoirs et formes d’expertises mobilisés par l’action étatique contemporaine. Reposant sur des instruments allant de la quantification à la production qualitative de scénarios d’avenir, elle émerge dans les années 1960 comme une forme d’expertise étatique capable d’ordonner le champ social et gouverner le changement social. La catégorie du « long terme » résulte d’une circulation des idées entre les courants français et américains qui travaillent au tournant des années 1950 et 1960 à la formulation d’outils pour la décision. Cet article étudie cette genèse et l’institutionnalisation du long terme au sein de l’État français, depuis le « souci d’avenir » qui préoccupe les élites au lendemain de la crise de Mai 1968 jusqu’au développement de l’État-stratège. Les idées managériales qui ont donné naissance à la prospective se transforment dans une réflexion de New Public Management, attestant de la continuité d’une approche entrepreneuriale de l’État.

Publication date 2015
LACAN Laure
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This paper aims to describe the social studies of credit developed in France over the past dozen years. We argue that this French sociology of credit, mostly centered on France, can be useful for researchers analyzing other countries, with other institutional particularities, because it proposes a specific method and a specific way to raise questions: credit is mostly understood as a result of social interactions embedded in organizational and legal structures. French researchers also deeply analyze the consequences of the organization of the credit market for inequalities, social stratification, and people’s life experiences. The first part of the paper focuses on works that have examined credit as a social test, looking at the institutional, technical, and social frameworks of money lending. Then, credit is understood as a sociological experiment: how is it integrated into household economies? How do people use forms of credit? Finally, the third part concentrates on credit failure, when a bank loan becomes a debt. This aspect is mostly framed in French sociology as “over-indebtedness,” which is an administrative and a social category. Throughout the paper, we address credit as both a relationship and a practice. This approach is heuristic, as we seek to demonstrate, because it enables us to show that credit is a social and political issue.

European integration of financial markets appears to repeatedly encounter specific kinds of problems about the substance and limits of the notion of “the market” undergoing integration, and about the status and role of money, market infrastructures, and government within it. Moreover, these problems and the controversies around them parallel classical discussions in economic theory such as that between conceptions of the market as a frictionless space and as a process of competition. A “competitive conception of the market” is identified as producing these parallel problems and controversies in European market integration and economic theory because it implies a contradictory “integration of fragmentation.” These themes and parallels can be specifically identified in a recent major project to integrate financial market infrastructures: a pan-European settlement platform – “Target2-Securities (T2S)” – to overcome existing fragmentation between the systems that perform the actual delivery of money and securities from financial transactions. Moreover, a close analysis of T2S answers a question that existing sociological and political economy approaches to European integration – focusing primarily on the interests and ideas of powerful players – struggle with: why T2S will become de facto a monopoly for the European Central Bank when early on in the integration process EU institutions emphasized an industry-led integration. Foucault’s notion of “discursive formation” is employed to conceptualize these arguments.

in Contemporary Drug Problems Publication date 2013
DEMANT Jakob Johan
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This article analyzes recent developments in Danish alcohol policy, culture, and industry. It reveals cross-sector dynamics and complexities that are often downplayed in existing literature. It traces how a stable “structural configuration” emerged in the 1960s-1980s between the three domains, based on liberalization. A particular adolescent alcohol culture of intoxication, however, emerged in the 1990s, raising public awareness and calls for policy intervention. Contrary to what may have been expected, this did not represent a break with the liberal alcohol configuration in policy, culture, and industry, but an increased segregation of adolescent consumption from adult consumption, exposing the former to severe legal and moral regulation. This analysis of historic-structural dynamics helps explain why adolescent drinking is dependent on more than isolated causal links such as between policy events and consumption.

in American Institute for Contemporary German Studies (John Hopkins University) Publication date 2014-03-19
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What is the role of non-state actors—corporate and civic—in influencing and redirecting regulatory reforms? How do critical junctures like financial crises change interest group dynamics? Focusing on financial consumer protection reforms across the Atlantic, this essay discusses the role of civil society actors in bringing about policy change that runs counter the traditional capture narrative in the literature on financial regulatory reform. In light of the 2008 financial crisis, policymakers in the European Union (EU) and the United States turned their attention to financial consumer protection (FCP) and adopted a range of policy measures in response to crisis-related failures. [First lines]

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