Social Studies of Finance Research Network

Over the past decades, financial logics have spread from the fields of banking and trading into wider social domains – a trend that has continued and even intensified in the aftermath of the Global Financial Crisis. In one dimension, we are seeing financial markets evolving to price and trade things once thought to be outside the domain of finance. New markets are emerging pricing and trading body parts, genes and environmental ‘assets’ such as ecosystems services. In another dimension, we see such markets increasingly integral to daily life: through processes of ‘securitization’, relatively routine financial obligations and transactions (such as the purchase of houses, education and insurance) are now connected to globally integrated financial networks. This entanglement of financial markets with spaces and activities not previously associated with processes of economic value and commensuration poses a series of challenges to the conventional understandings of the relationship between finance and society.

This group brings together scholars who research the cultural, social and political aspects of the expansion of financial markets. Our activities consist of reading groups, seminars and workshops.