Anthropology of Economy list of active members 2021
BRUCKERMANN, Charlotte (Max Planck Institute for
Profile: My ongoing research examines social reproduction amidst economic accumulation and ecological transformation in China. My doctoral fieldwork focused on the intersection between labour, locality, and class among rural families sustaining precarious livelihoods. These residents of a coal mining area mobilized labour to make claims over fields, homes, and kin in defiance of forces of extraction, exploitation, and dispossession. My postdoctoral research explores how financialization and deindustrialization reconfigure spatial relations and class interests through policies constructing China as an Ecological Civilization. In particular, I examine carbon exchanges that quantify, manage, and financialize the environmental behaviour of corporations and citizens across an uneven rural-urban terrain.
Thematic interests: China, finance, labour, class, environment, energy.
CAPELLO, Carlo (University of
Profile: Carlo Capello is lecturer of Social and
Cultural Anthropology at the University of Torino, Italy. After having
investigated topics such as transnational migration from Morocco as well
as Southern Italian family structures, Carlo Capello is currently
working on an ethnographic analysis of economic crisis, neoliberal
policies and unemployment in Torino.
Thematic Interests: Neoliberalism, unemployment, deindustralisation, Marxism
ESCRIBANO, Paula (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)
Profile: Paula Escribano is part-time professor (since 2016) and researcher at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB). She is a member of the Laboratory of Personal Networks and Communities (egolab-GRAFO, www.egolab.cat) at the Research Group of Fundamentally Oriented Anthropology (GRAFO, www.grafo.cat). Currently she is co-leading the project "Rural self-management initiatives and public policies: A conceptualization of neo-peasants" funding by Wenner-Gren Foundation
Recent Publications: Escribano, P.; Hummel, A. y Milano, C. (forthcoming). El papel de la economía informal en los proyectos agroecológicos durante el COVID-19. Horizontes Antropológicos ; Escribano, P.; Molina, J. L.; Lubbers, M.J. (2020) Intentional Ecological Communities in Catalonia: Subsistence and Material Reproduction. Journal of Cleaner Production; Escribano, P; Hummel A., Molina, J. L.; Lubbers, M.J. (2019). “Él es emprendedor y yo no. Yo soy autónomo”: La diversidad de estrategias de reproducción de los neo-campesinos en Cataluña. AIBR. Antropólogos Iberoamericanos en Red 15(1) 129 – 156; Escribano, P, Lubbers M.J; Molina JL (2017). Becoming part of an eco-community: Social and environmental activism or livelihood strategy? Social Sciences, 6(4), 148.
Thematic interests: Economic anthropology: livelihood practices, self-sufficiency economy, sustainability. Political mobilization: Public policies in the rurality, political agency, conflict and infrapolitics. Political ecology: environmental sustainability, (neo) peasantry and cultural ecology.
FÄRBER, Alexa (University of Vienna)
Thematic interests: everyday economic practices, post-ANT and urban research, mobility, urban imagineering, Islam in urban space, representational work, ethnographic methodology, ethnographies of academic work, e-/valuation of academic practices.
FOTTA, Martin (Czech Academy of Sciences)
Profile: I am a researcher at the Department of Mobility and Migration at the Institute of Ethnology of the Czech Academy of Sciences. My first research area concerns the relationship between welfare state transformations and citizenship in Latin America. With the ethnographic focus on Brazil, I examine ways financialization has reshaped social protection as well as the simultaneous expansion of non-contributory social grants and contraction of contributory pension systems. I also have long standing ethnographic interest in Romanies, especially within the Portuguese-speaking South Atlantic. I have explored character of Romani economic niche in Bahia (informal moneylending) and its embeddedness within the current financial capitalism. This has provided me a novel point of entry into examining the dense credit’n’debt universe of modest-income Brazilians. I also am interested in the question of academic precarity and I am one of the co-authors of The anthropological career in Europe: A complete report on the EASA membership survey (EASA, 2020)
Thematic interests: value; money; credit & debt; nomadic & peripatetic livelihoods; household economy; welfare state and social protection; cash transfers and distribution
FRANCZAK, Łukasz (Institute of Law and Business
Organization, Kraków, Poland)
Profile: Łukasz Franczak runs the Centre for Anthropology and Comparative Commercial Law at the Institute of Law and Business Organization, socio-legal think tank based in Kraków (Poland). He has studied law and ethnology/cultural anthropology at the Jagiellonian University, Kraków and received Ph.D. degree in commercial law from his Alma Mater. In his Ph.D. thesis he presented (original) socio-legal theory of a joint-stock company (2015). He is interested in historical development of economic practices and institutions, especially in the field of money and finance.
Thematic interests: money, corporate finance & governance, securities, debt, banking
FONTEFRANCESCO, Michele Flippo (University of
Gastronomic Sciences/Durham University)
Profile: Michele F. Fontefrancesco (Alessandria in 1983) is a social anthropologist specialized in Economic Anthropology. He completed his training in Italy (University of Eastern Piedmont), Poland (Adam Mickiewicz University) and Great Britain (Durham University). His research investigates the theme of local development in Europe and Africa with a particular focus on entrepreneurship in the field ofcrafts and food industry. He is a Research Fellow at University of Gastronomic Sciences and an Honorary Research Fellow at the Department of Anthropology of Durham University.
Thematic interests: local development, crafts, agriculture, heritage, entrepreneurship.
HANN, Chris (Max Planck Institute
for Social Anthropology)
Profile: Chris Hann is an economic anthropologist who
has specialized in socialist Eastern Europe (1970s-1980s) and later in
postsocialist transformations. He has also worked in Turkey and China
(Xinjiang). Property relations have been one major theme. Another could
be summed up as the contemporary relevance of Karl Polanyi's
substantivism (with reference both to the insidious rise of a new
"market society" and of reactions to this in the course of the "double
movement"). Hann is co-author (with Keith Hart) of a short introduction
"Economic Anthropology. History, Ethnography, Critique" (Polity Press,
In addition to his ongoing personal projects CH has co-led several research groups in economic anthropology at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology (with Stephen Gudeman on "Economy and Ritual"; with Catherine Alexander and Jonathan Parry on "Industry and Inequality"; and with Don Kalb on "Financialization").
Thematic interests: Theory and history of economic anthropology; markets; property; rural transformation; socialism and postsocialism; Karl Polanyi
HIRSLUND, Dan V. (University of Copenhagen)
Profile: Currently, my research engagements cover
three registers. One is an extension of my PhD project that looks into
21st century Maoism in South Asia and its transformations from a rural
to an urban movement in Nepal. I am interested in convergences between
capitalist restructuring of labor forms, and the formation of an urban
precariat through its participation in regional democratization
Second is a project for which I received 2 year funding from the Danish Research Council in late 2014, looks at the social power of monetary debts among precariat laborers in Kathmandu. Through an examination of how credit circulates in contexts of insecure employment the aim is to look at the kind of alliances, or solidarities, that both vertical and horizontal debt relations generate for the urban working poor.
Third is an examination of deepening precarisation in welfare economies with a focus on Denmark. This engagement will result in a book publication in 2018 together with Julie Rahbæk Møller and Karen Lisa Salamon examining a wide range of precarious labor in Denmark. I am also engaged in analyses of the peculiarity of academic precarity in relation to the expanding group of non-tenured postdocs.
Thematic interests: labor economy, political economy, value, solidarity economy, post-capitalism
Profile: My PhD thesis (UCL) is about changing relations at work, in the context of privatization and flexibilization of labour and production in Bulgaria. Since 2012, I work at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology, as a member of the group “Industry and Inequality in Eurasia” (2012-2015) and the research group “Financialization” (2016-2019). My postdoctoral research focused on deindustrialization and on regular/casual work relations in Pernik (Bulgaria). My current study on financialization, focuses on indebtedness and changing intergenerational relations, legal transformations and political contestations in Greece. I am a co-convenor of the Network for the Anthropology of Economy (2016-2018).
Thematic interests: Economic anthropology, historical anthropology, work and labour, debt, moral economy.
KOJANIC, Ognjen (University of Pittsburgh)
Profile: Ognjen Kojanic is currently a doctoral candidate in cultural anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh. His doctoral research focuses on a case of worker-ownership in an industrial context in Croatia. By focusing of the case of ITAS, a metalworking enterprise whose workers are now officially recognized as the owners of their company, this project investigates the difference between property rights and ownership as ideas and practices in the post-socialist transformation of economic and political relations in the former Yugoslavia. Ownership is conceived here as a claim based on possession and use of resources in the form of a circumscribed bundle of inseparable rights, overlapping in part with the rights generally seen as constituting private property, but also limiting them.
Thematic interests: peripheral capitalism, post-socialist transformation, working class politics, property and ownership, economic democracy, industrial labor.
KOSNIK, Elisabeth (University of Graz)
Profile: Postdoc at the Department of Cultural Anthropology and European Ethnology at the University of Graz.
Thematic interests: multiple livelihoods, self-provisioning, subsistence production, food, rural lifeways
MAUKSCH, Stefanie (Leipzig University)
Profile: Stefanie Mauksch is an anthropologist and organization studies scholar who conducts ethnographic research on urban movements that seek to elevate economies in the Global South through business innovations, i.e. entrepreneurship. Her current long-term research investigates the imaginative work, embodied practices and social effects of an emergent startup world in Khartoum, Sudan. In overlap with entrepreneurialism, she studies the effects of development initiatives that employ disabled people as a means of integration. Entrepreneurial tropes feed into new modes of enacting value around disabled people and their capabilities. In the past, Stefanie has published on other anthropological topics, such as dialogic ethnography, the anthropology of events, Butler’s performativity, and utopianism, in both the disciplines of Anthropology and Organization Studies. Stefanie holds a position as senior lecturer/postdoc at the University of Leipzig (Germany).
Thematic interests: the anthropology/ies of entrepreneurship, development, disability, neoliberalism, events
MIKUŠ, Marek (Max Planck Institute for Social
Anthropology and Trinity College Dublin)
Profile: Marek Mikuš (LSE, 2014) is a Research Fellow
at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology and Trinity College
Dublin. His earlier research project concerned governmental reforms and
hegemony as reflected in the relations of civil society and the state in
Serbia. He currently works on household debt in Croatia and begins
working on financialization of states in postsocialist Eastern Europe as
a member of the GEOFIN project at the Trinity College.
Thematic interests: civil society, governmentality, hegemony, household debt, finance, the state.
MOLINA, José Luis (Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona)
Profile: I am an Economic Anthropologist interested
in the emergence of socioeconomic structures, especially ethnic enclaves
and transnational fields. My approach is through mixed methods with an
emphasis on ethnography and personal network analysis. Southeast Europe
and Romania in particular, are my main areas of interest.
The current research projects in which I am PI or collaborator are available at grupsderecerca.uab.cat/egolab/content/projectes-rd
Thematic interests: moral economy, migrant enclaves, personal networks, transnationalism, SouthEast Europe
MÜLLER, Juliane (University of Munich, University of Barcelona)
Profile: Juliane Müller holds the title of a lecturer at the University of Munich and is a research fellow at the University of Barcelona (Research Group GER Grup d'Estudis sobre Reciprocitat). Her postdoctoral work (2013-2019) dealt with the electronics trade in Andean Bolivia and transnational market channels. She looked at the encounter of Bolivian traders, Asian migrant entrepreneurs, and East Asian Multinational Corporations, as well as traders’ commercial circuits and exchanges across market, household, and festive and ritual events. As an expansion of this research, she is currently exploring the transformation and valuation of outdated electronic equipment in Bolivia and the South-Central Andes. Further areas of interest include transnational labour migration and community sports.
Thematic interests: trade and markets, exchange theory, reciprocity, popular economy, multinational corporations, transregional connections, labour migration, circular economy, e-waste
NAROTZKY, Susana (University of
Profile: Professor of Social Anthropology at the
University of Barcelona, Spain. Secretary of the American
Anthropological Association. Past President of the European Association
of Social Anthropologists. European Research Council Advanced Grant
Award for the project “Grassroots
Economics: Meaning, Project and Practice in the Pursuit of Livelihood”
Rethinking the concept of labour. Special Issue on Labour, Penny Harvey and Christian Krohn-Hansen (eds), Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, 2018
(with V. Goddard) co-edited volume Work and Livelihoods – History, Ethnography and Models in Times of Crisis, Routledge, 2017, winner of the Society for the Anthropology of Work book prize 2017
On Waging the Ideological War: Against the Hegemony of Form. Anthropological Theory, Vol. 16(2-3): 263-284, 2016
Where Have All the Peasants Gone? Annual Review of Anthropology, Vol. 45:19.1–19.18, 2016
Between inequality and injustice: dignity as a motive for mobilization during the crisis. History and Anthropology, Vol.27 (1): 74-92, 2016
(with N. Besnier) Crisis, Value, Hope: Rethinking the Economy. Current Anthropology V. 55 (S9):4-16, 2014 (OA)
Thematic interests: Economic anthropology: livelihood practices, crises, inequality, sustainability, social reproduction. Anthropology of work: industrial and agricultural labor, unregulated labor, unpaid work, care relations . Political mobilization: historical memory, political agency, conflict, class
PANTEA, Maria-Carmen (BBU, Cluj Napoca)
Profile: My interests focus on youth studies, particularly the relationship between young people and work in its various forms, including graduates’ overqualification, entrepreneurship and vocational education and training. Author of Precarity and Vocational Education and Training. Craftsmanship and Employability in Romania (Palgrave, 2019). My research examines through the lenses of critical theory, the call centers as a ‘case’ of precarious employment in today’s Romania. It unpacks the mechanisms, metaphors and symbols meant to create and maintain young people’s adherence to the demands of work.
Thematic interests: precarious work, service economy, graduate employability, overqualification, VET, youth policy.
SABATÉ, Muriel Irene (Universitat de Barcelona)
Profile: Irene Sabaté Muriel is a researcher in Social Anthropology and a university lecturer at the Universitat de Barcelona. In 2009 she obtained her PhD with a dissertation on housing provisioning in East Berlin ("Habitar tras el Muro. La cuestión de la vivienda en el este de Berlín", Icaria, 2012). As a postdoctoral researcher, between 2009 and 2012 she took part in the 7thFP European project MEDEA (Models and their Effects on Development Paths), on industrial work and economic models; and, since 2012, she is investigating mortgage indebtedness and home repossessions in the Barcelona metropolitan area, with a Post-PhD Research Grant from the Wenner Gren Foundation in 2014. She is a member of the Grup d'Estudis sobre Reciprocitat (GER) since 2005, and she teaches Economic Anthropology, Anthropology of Consumption, Urban Anthropology, and Anthropology of Social Movements.
Thematic Interests: political economy / reciprocity / provisioning / work and social reproduction / housing / debt and credit / financialization
SALVERDA, Tijo (University of Cologne)
Profile: I am a senior researcher at the University of
Cologne’s Global South Studies Center and a research associate of the
University of Pretoria’s Human Economy Programme. My research interests
include the anthropology of elites, capitalism, large-scale land
acquisition, finance, critique and countermovements, and (corporate)
My current project investigates how investors/corporations involved in large-scale land based investments in Africa, in particular Zambia, respond – or not – to concerns raised by critics such as civil society, NGOs, rural residents, (activist) scholars, journalists, international governance institutions, etc. It resonates with Polanyi’s double movement and the role and influence of critique (in capitalism).
Thematic interests: anthropology of elites; capitalism; critique; countermovements; power; large-scale land acquisition; Mauritius; Zambia
SCHMIDT, Mario (University Cologne, Germany)
Profile: I am currently a post-doctoral researcher in the Collaborative Research Centre „Future Rural Africa: Future-making and social-ecological transformation" (funded by the German Research Foundation). My project deals with migration from Western to Central Kenya as a form of future-making (I am especially interested in the ways in which actors move between different spheres of occupation such as wage labor in multi-national companies, agriculture and tourism). In my PhD I scrutinized a North-American form of shell-money called wampum. I subsequently used the ethnographic to read Mauss “Essay on the Gift” as primarily an essay on money. Other research interests include local notions of quantity and socio-cultural classification of money.
SCHUBERT, Jon (Brunel University London)
Profile: I’m a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at Brunel, where my project, ‘The Afterlives of Oil-Backed Infrastructures in the Port of Lobito, Angola’ uses the city’s economic architecture and transport infrastructures as a lens to study the political and economic effects of cycles of commodity-dependent boom and bust in everyday life. An earlier project investigated how state functionaries at the Mozambican Ministry of Mineral Resources and Energy deal with the impending but halted resource boom. My monograph, Working the System: A Political Ethnography of the New Angola (Cornell University Press 2017) is an ethnographic study of contemporary neo-authoritarianism seen through the prism of local notions of the ‘system’.
Thematic interests: Infrastructures, crisis, transnational trade and global inequality, formal institutions and state bureaucrats, memory, authoritarianism.
SISCHARENCO, Elena (University of Lancaster)
Profile: I am currently a post-doctoral researcher in the IAMRRI project (HORIZON 2020), which investigates webs of innovation value chains in additive manufacturing (AM) and identifies openings for responsible research and innovation (RRI). I investigate innovation processes in AM (more known as 3D printing), in the medical field and in the automotive industry, through an ethnographic study with companies and subjects involved in these processes. My PhD research at the University of St Andrews was based on an ethnographic study of entrepreneurs of the construction business in Lombardy, Northern Italy. The aim was to gain some understanding of this business, of entrepreneurialism, and of individuals in a non-stereotypical light through a full and complex account of their daily lives.Thematic interests: business anthropology, innovation, informal relations, knowledge, migration, trust, ethnography of Italy and Europe, corruption, media and perception, personal and group identity, vulnerability, crisis, risk.
SOSNA, Daniel (Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague)
Profile: Daniel is an anthropologist interested in waste regimes. This means that his field research leads him to landfills and incinerators. Because of his four-field training, he experiments with ethnographic and archaeological approaches to research. He co-edited with Lenka Brunclíková the book 'Archaeologies of Waste: Encounters with the Unwanted' (2017, Oxbow Books) and with Catherine Alexander the book 'Thrift: Everyday Paradoxes' (under review). His current collaborative project 'Waste Regime at a Crossroad' provides a reflection of the contemporary waste regime and its internal dynamics along the three different analytical axes: 1. landfilling and incineration, 2. disposal of cars, and 3. disposal of electronics.
Thematic interests: discard, informality, materiality, thrift, value, waste
STREINZER, Andreas (University of St. Gallen, Institute for Social Research Frankfurt)
Profile: My research focuses on reconfigurations of provisioning, as a mode of conducting ethnographic and reconstructive research on social reproduction. The focus on provisioning allows to understand how come certain livelihoods become possible, and to connect it to moral and political questions about personhood, kinship, capitalism, and statehood. I developed this interest in my dissertation focused on economic crisis in Volos, Greece. In my postdoc project, as part of the Europe's Undeserving Project with Jelena Tosic in St. Gallen, I engage in questions of inequality and moralisation, by focusing on wealth taxation as social struggle in fiscal relations.
Thematic interests: economic anthropology, social reproduction, provisioning, austerity, kinship
Profile: I received a doctoral degree in social anthropology from Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris. Between 2006 and 2012 I was a research fellow at the Max Planck institute for Social Anthropology, Halle. My main research interests are in the area of economic anthropology and the anthropology of religion. My current project centers on the coexistence of majority Orthodox Christianity and minority Islam in Bulgaria and Russia within the frame of work relations. I have conducted extensive fieldwork in Estonia, north-western Russia and Bulgaria.
Thematic interests: economic anthropology, anthropology of religion, political anthropology, organizational anthropology, neoliberalization, work, Orthodox Christianity in Eastern Europe, historically rooted Islam in Eastern Europe.
VALENZUELA-GARCÍA, Hugo (Universitat Autònoma
Profile: Hugo Valenzuela-Garcia (PhD, 2006) is Associate Professor at the Department of Anthropology of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain. He is the current director of Egolab-GRAFO Research Group (http://grupsderecerca.uab.cat/egolab/) and was founder and convenor of the EASA Anthropology of Economy Network and former board member of the US SEA Network. He carried out fieldwork in Malaysia, Mexico and Barcelona and his main area of research and teaching relates to Economic Anthropology and Human Ecology. He has done extensive research on peasants, moral economy, ethnic economies, poverty and informal economy. Some of his recent publications include (2017) Valenzuela-Garcia, H. & JL Molina (2017) “Economic Anthropology”, Encyclopedia of Life Support Systems, UNESCO EOLSS Publishers Co Ltd.; Valenzuela-Garcia, H. (2018) “Barter”, in Callan H. (ed.) (2018) The International Encyclopaedia of Anthropology. John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. UK; and Molina, J.L. M.J. Lubbers, H. Valenzuela- García & S. Gómez-Mestres (2017) “Cooperation and competition in social anthropology”, Anthropology Today, February 2017, Vo. 1 (33).
VETTA, Theodora (University of Barcelona)
Profile: Theodora Vetta (PhD Ehess, Paris) is a
European Research Council researcher at the Advanced grant project
"Grassroots Economics", Univeristy of Barcelona.Her previous work
unpacks the ‘‘associational revolution’’ in post-communist and
post-conflict Serbia by looking at global systems of political economy
and Aid, current trends of state restructuring and processes of
subjectification that come along “civil society building” projects. Her
current research focuses on regimes of austerity, and more precisly on
private/public debt, labor fragmentation, and privatization of energy
production in crisis-ridden Greece.
Recent publication:co-author of “Moral economy: Rethinking a radical concept”, and guest co-editor in “Moral Economy in Crisis” (Anthropological Theory, 2016)
Thematic interests: energy, taxation, class, Balkans, austerity, unionism, debt