**Deadline Extended** CfP: Re-Imagining Class – Materialities of Resistance, State Power and the Commons | 2015 ESA conference

**New Deadline: 15th February**

The Critical Political Economy research network is inviting paper and panel submissions for our sessions on ‘Re-Imagining Class – Materialities of Resistance, State Power and the Commons’ at the 2015 ESA conference in Prague, 25-28 August.

Please find the CfP below. Deadline for submissions is 15 February 2015.

We hope that you will find this Call interesting – please also share with colleagues and students who might not be part of the CPERN community yet! We welcome the submission of individual papers, but also panel suggestions.

Feel free to contact us if you have any questions regarding this Call, or the conference in general.

Many thanks and all best wishes,

The CPERN board: Angela Wigger, Mònica Clua Losada, Jamie Jordan, Andrew Morton and Laura Horn


Call for Papers – ‘Differences, Inequalities and the Sociological Imagination’

12th Conference of the European Sociological Association, Prague, Czech Republic, 25 – 28 August 2015

Critical Political Economy Research Network (RN06)

Re-Imagining Class – Materialities of Resistance, State Power and the Commons

In a context of increasingly authoritarian processes of austerity measures in response to the crisis in Europe and beyond, various groups and social movements have articulated quests for more democracy and reclaiming the Commons. Categories of public goods and the commons include amongst others education, health, environment, food, water, air, energy, land, housing, transport, cities, or waste management. These notions generally engender new forms of horizontal participatory and inclusive bottom up democratic decision-making and communal ownership structures not considered for profit. Democratic imaginaries are however only seldom spelled out, as if such wished-for democratic structures were without a teleology. This raises the question of which concrete conceptions the (radical) Left has to offer with respect to the political economy of democracy and the commons? Which lessons can be drawn from prefigurative politics and existing/real life examples in the organisation of the economy and public goods? Which implications would such imaginaries have for rethinking class, and the materialities within social movements? At the same time, in order to contextualise these processes in the concrete materiality of crisis and resistance, we need to understand the changes and continuities in the imaginaries of state power and authoritarian governance, and the relations between social forces struggling over the prerogatives of resistance and contestation.

As the overall conference theme suggests, it is through sociological imagination that we can begin to understand the current conjuncture and formulate alternatives. Re-imagining class should be a core focus in this process. We are interested in hosting a wide range of topics in sessions that are linked to the above themes. This could include a focus on various social movements on the Commons; contestation and resistance to austerity measures; new forms of democratic participation and citizenship; conceptual reflection and critique on the use of class concepts; authoritarian dimensions of the ongoing capitalist restructuring; new manifestations of the capital-labour conflict; or the social/human geography of contestation and resistance. Of particular importance here are critical feminist political economy perspectives that challenge underlying patriarchal structures and social relations.

We are interested in all of the above plus more. We invite contributions (papers and/or panel proposals) from those with an interest in critical political economy research, regardless of their disciplinary affiliation and whether they are in academia or not. We also hope to attract a diverse range of participants, from a number of countries and backgrounds.

Notes for authors

Abstracts should not exceed 250 words. Abstracts must be submitted online to the submission platform, see below. Abstracts sent by email cannot be accepted. Abstracts will be peer-reviewed and selected for presentation by the Research Network; the letter of notification will be sent by the conference software system in early April 2015.

Abstract submission deadline: 15 February 2015.

CPERN mid-term conference programme, 12/13 September, University of Vienna

Crisis, Resistance and Rights: Critical Political Economy Perspectives

Thursday 11 September

Drinks from around 19.00 onwards at Cafe Kollektiv Gagarin (Garnisongasse 24, 1090 Vienna)

Friday 12 September


Welcome by local hosts and CPERN

Welcome by Ulrich Brand and Johannes Jäger on behalf of the local organizing team
Laura Horn on behalf of CPERN


Towards a critical political economy of rights

Chair: Ilker Ataç(University of Vienna)

● Kenneth Horvath (University of Education Karlsruhe)
Governing mobility, securing order, making precarity – the changing forms and functions of mobility related rights from Fordist guestwork to the neoliberal ‘centaur state’

● Severin Reissl and Faheem Rokadiya (both Glasgow University Real World Economics Society) A Right to Work – The history, philosophy and economics of full employment

● David Kempel (City University London)
Invisible rights: a radical/nonliberal conception of rights as temporally and spatially inclusive


Coffee break


Crisis and European integration theoretical debates

Chair: Mònica Clua Losada (Pompeu Fabra Barcelona)

● Jon Las Heras (University of Manchester) Dependency theory: European Integration and its problematic marriage

● Johannes Jæger and Elisabeth Springler (both University of Applied Sciences BFI Vienna) Critical political economy and postKeynesian perspectives on the future of European crisis and integration

● Magnus Ryner (King’s College London) Europe’s ordoliberal iron cage. Critical political economy, the Eurozone crisis & its management


Lunch (at the university canteen)


Parallel panels

1. Parallel Session: Crisis/management I

Chair: Angela Wigger (Nijmegen University)

● Etienne Schneider (University of Vienna) Just more of the same? Crisis tendencies of the finance dominated regime of accumulation and the consolidation of new patterns of European integration

● BartJaap Verbeek (Nijmegen University) Investment protection/financial crisis in Eurozone

● Firat Cengiz (Liverpool Law School) Network governance in postfinancial crisis Europe: What impact on legitimacy?

2. Parallel Session: New challenges in the global political economy environment, finance and law

Chair: Johannes Jaeger (University of Applied Sciences BFI Vienna)

● Ulrich Brand (University of Vienna) and Markus Wissen (Berlin School of Economics and Law)
Contested green economy, contours of green capitalism: Crisis strategies from above and below

● James Goodman (University of Technology Sydney) and Ariel Salleh (University of Jena)
The ‘green economy’ and its ‘other': class war takes a new turn?

● Johannes Ruppacher – How legal frameworks paralyze social movements.The Structural Bias of Global Investment Law in the Context of Mexico

● Jerome Roos (European University Institute) The political economy of sovereign default: Comparing policy responses to international debt crises in Mexico and Argentina


Coffee break


Rights and social reproduction struggles and alternatives

Chair: Hanna Lichtenberger (University of Vienna)

● Ian Bruff (University of Manchester) and Stefanie Wöhl (University of Vienna) Authoritarian neoliberalism in the Eurozone: constitutionalising austerity, disciplining the household

● Tania Toffanin (Ca’Foscari Venice) Care work and the commons in Italy: between continuities and discontinuities

● Zofia Łapniewska (Warsaw University) Commons as an alternative economic perspective for women (Tabled paper)

● Stephen Cowden and Gurnam Singh (both Coventry University) ‘Vertical Neoliberalism’ and the Commodification of Human Need

19.30 onwards dinner and drinks at Bierheuriger Gangl (on campus, Alser Strasse 4/ Hof 1, 1090

Saturday 13 September

9.00–11.00 Parallel panels

3. Parallel session: Crisis/management II

Chair: Angela Wigger (Nijmegen University)

● Saori Shibata (Leiden University) and David Bailey (University of Birmingham) Disrupting labour’s disciplining, containing disruption (and disrupting containment): beyond Abenomics and Cameron’s permanent austerity

● Julia Lux (University of Tuebingen)
France in limbo: on the struggles about crisis exit strategies and grains of resistance

● Joanna McDarby (University of Limerick)
Austerity in Ireland, serving the knowledge economy or eroding the right to education?

4. Parallel session: Forms of social struggle and alternative organising I

Chair: Laura Horn (Roskilde University)

● Umut Bozkurt (Eastern Mediterranean University) and Mònica Clua Losada (Pompeu Fabra
Barcelona) Limited hegemony in Spain and Turkey after the Indignados and the Gezi Park protests

● Axel Gehring (University of Marburg) EU‘s approach on rights and the Turkish protest movement

● Caglar Dolek (METU Ankara) Policing (in) the crisis: On the contested strategies of crisis management in Turkey

● Cangul Örnek (Maltepe University Istanbul) Resistance in the plazas: The whitecollar workers as militants of the June uprising in Istanbul


coffee break

Reclaiming rights

Chair: Stefanie Woehl (University of Vienna)

● Omur Kurt (METU Ankara) Right to water as a sphere of praxis

● Stephen Cowden and Gary Spolander (both Coventry University) Social work and Human Rights: but which human rights?

● Katherina Bodirsky (METU Ankara) Contradictions in EU European state and placemaking
and the “Right to the City”


Lunch (provided by CPERN and local organisors)


Parallel panels

Parallel session 5: Rights to work, rights for workers

Chair: Etienne Schneider (University of Vienna)

● Ilona Steiler (University of Helsinki) Human rightsbased development in the global market economy: Sacrificing labor rights?

● Philip Rathgeb (European University Institute) A viable model of egalitarian capitalism? Danish flexicurity and union power

● Márton Czirfusz (Hungarian Academy of Sciences and Public Sociology Working Group ‘Helyzet’) Right or obligation to work? Uneven geographies of workfare in postsocialist Hungary

Parallel session 6: Forms of social struggle and alternative organising II

Chair: Ian Bruff (University of Manchester)

● Olatz Ribera (Pompeu Fabra Barcelona) Strategic multilevel political struggle: The case of the Platform of People Affected by Mortgages (PAH).

● Abel Polese (Tallinn University) and Jeremy Morris (University of Birmingham) Renegotiating social policy through informality: where is postsocialism heading to?

● Tobias Haas (University of Tuebingen) Struggles for energy autonomy in Spain

● Mònica Clua Losada (Pompeu Fabra Barcelona), Angela Wigger (Nijmegen University) and Laura Horn (Roskilde University) Authoritarian statism and resistance: meeting across crisis realities


Concluding session and interim network business meeting

… followed by drinks!

Call for Papers – Mid-term conference: Crisis, Resistance and Rights: Critical Political Economy Perspectives


Crisis, Resistance and Rights: Critical Political Economy Perspectives

12-13 September 2014, University of Vienna

The current crisis reveals one of capitalism’s key contradictions: the relationship between rights, the state and society. Giving primacy to austerity politics, governments appear unable to guarantee basic rights vis-à-vis market forces. These developments constitute fundamental challenges to social reproduction. Governments have for example been pro-active in protecting banks’ rights in foreclosures and housing evictions at the expense of people’s right to housing, or imposed labour reforms marking a retreat of labour rights and rights to decent work. Similar trends can be observed with respect to welfare rights, the right to education, the right to water or democratic rights that go beyond ballot boxes, such as the right to protest and claim public spaces. Of particular importance here is also the political ecology dimension, with a focus on the financialisation of nature, enclosure of commons, and the green economy as a new hegemonic project. Resistance movements and civil society organisations/groups increasingly challenge private property rights and demand collective socio-economic and human rights. Academic discussions of rights have long been a prerequisite of liberal political philosophy and received little attention from critical scholars.  What can scholars in law, political economy, political science and sociology contribute to a critical understanding of rights? How does an emancipatory conception of rights look like? What are common rights, and/or rights to commons?  How could such conceptions add to a critical understanding of crisis and resistance?

This two-day conference, hosted by the University of Vienna, Department of Political Science, seeks to explore interlinkages between crisis, resistance and rights in an open, genial and reflexive manner. We are interested in all of the above plus more, and wish for the conference to cover a wide range of topics. As such, we seek contributions from scholars with an interest in political economy research, regardless of their disciplinary affiliation and whether they are in academia or not. We also hope to attract a diverse range of participants, from a variety of countries and backgrounds. To this end, limited funds will be available for assisting PhD and early career scholars, especially those from Central and Eastern Europe, with their travel and accommodation costs.

There is no fee for attending and participating in the workshop. The workshop language will be English.

Abstracts of around 250 words should be submitted to cpern@criticalpoliticaleconomy.net by no later than 1 March 2014. The applicants will be informed of the selection committee’s decision by 1 April 2014.



The Critical Political Economy Research Network (CPERN) promotes and facilitates research aimed at understanding recent transformations of capitalism and capitalist societies. The primary focus is on Europe, but CPERN is in no way restricted to just this part of the world. CPERN’s purpose is to reassert the centrality of political economy perspectives and to promote critical and emancipatory scholarship. It is a hub for interdisciplinary exchange, straddling principally the disciplines of sociology, politics and economics, but also reaching out to geography, social policy and law.

The ESA programme (containing the CPERN sessions) is now online

Dear all,

The programme for the forthcoming European Sociological Association
conference can now be found on the conference website. See here –
http://www.esa11thconference.eu/home – for more details.

When clicking on the programme link, the drop-down menu on the right of the
screen gives you numerous options. Here you can select the CPERN sessions
(or those for any other network, should you wish) – we are RN06 Critical
Political Economy. I hope that you agree that we have been able to put
together an exciting and diverse series of sessions organised around the
themes touched upon in our call ‘Whose critique, whose crisis and whose

You will also see that two of our panels have been organised with two other
ESA networks – RN08 Disaster, Conflict and Social Crisis, and RN18
Sociology of Communications and Media Research. This cooperation extended
to the two high-profile semi-plenary sessions organised with these networks
– please click on the SPS link at the top of the drop-down menu for more
details (the sessions are 02SPS and 08SPS).

Best wishes,


CfP: European Sociological Association 11th Conference – Torino, 28-31 August 2013 – ‘Crisis, Critique and Change’

European Sociological Association 11th Conference – Torino, 28-31 August 2013 – ‘Crisis, Critique and Change’ 

Call for Papers, Critical Political Economy Research Network (RN06) – DL 1 February 2013


The recent years have, in the eyes of many, been characterised by a multiplicity of crises, the growth in significance of critiques of the current state of affairs, and increasing demands for change. However, the uneven impact of crises, the concentration of voices of critique in only parts of society and the world, and the very different demands for change that have been articulated, force critical political economy scholars to ask the question ‘Whose crisis, whose critique and whose change?’

This observation has many aspects to it. For example, apart from the initial shock in late 2008, many of those towards the top of different societies have suffered very little (if any) decline in wealth and incomes over the last few years. Moreover, the critiques have come from the radical Right as much as from more progressive currents of thought such as the Occupy, Indignados and other movements. Finally, very real change may be taking place, but in Europe for example it is often in the form of brutal and authoritarian structural adjustment programmes, social and political polarisation/conflict and a more general crisis of everyday living for the majority of the population (e.g. the rise in bankruptcies, evictions and imprisonments related to debt, the reductions of salaries, social rights and entitlements).

For this reason we are interested in hosting a wide range of topics in our sessions that are linked to the above themes. For instance, this could include the sharp growth of precarious labour and insecurity, the rise of state authoritarianism, the question of resistance and dissent from all sides of the political and social spectrum, the crises of welfare states and everyday living, and so on. More broadly, this could also include the crises and continuities in ‘living dead’ neoliberalism, the evolution of Eurozone governance, the possibilities for more progressive ‘models of capitalism’ in the future, the lessons that can be learned from the ‘pink tide’ in Latin America, the Arab uprisings, etc..

We are interested in all of the above plus more. As such, we seek contributions from those with an interest in political economy research, regardless of their disciplinary affiliation and whether they are in academia or not. We also hope to attract a diverse range of participants, from a number of countries and backgrounds.

We invite submission of papers and panel proposals for our open sessions – please see the instructions below and in the general CfP in the attachment. Moreover, at the Torino conference we have two joint sessions with other ESA networks. If you are interested in participating in these joint sessions, please indicate this on your submission. 


The Eurozone Crisis as an Opportunity: Structural Changes within the Member States of the Eurozone and the European Union

(Chair: Laura Horn (RN06) and Nikos Petropoulos (RN08) )

This joint panel with RN08 invites submissions on the theme of ‘The Eurozone Crisis as an Opportunity: Structural Changes within the Member States of the Eurozone and the European Union’. The focus will be on the structural – economic, political, and social changes – within the member states themselves. Special emphasis will be on the states that have especially been affected by the debt crisis and have taken part of the ECB/IMF/EU bail-out mechanism (e.g. Ireland, Portugal, Greece) or have received loans from EU/ECB to support their bank system (e.g. Spain). Papers may also focus on structural changes, if any, within the ‘solvent’ states of the Eurozone and the European Union (Germany, Finland, Holland, Austria, the Czech Republic). Priority will be given to comparative empirical and critical analysis. 


Critical Political Economy of the Media and Communication in Times of Capitalist Crisis and Change

(Chair: Ian Bruff (RN06) and Christian Fuchs (RN18))

This joint panel with RN18 invites submissions on the theme of ‘Critical Political Economy of the Media and Communication in Times of Capitalist Crisis and Change’. Abstract submissions could, for example, focus on the role of media and communication in critical political economy approaches to the crisis, the role of critical political economy approaches in the sociology of communications and the media, or indeed any other aspects of topics and issues linked to this theme. In other words, this joint session focuses on the intersection of Critical Political Economy and the Sociology of the Media and Communication. It is interested in contributions that focus on one or more of the following questions:

  • Which approaches that are based on Marx, Critical Political Economy, or Marxism are there today for understanding the current crisis and ongoing changes?
  • What is the role of the media and communication in these approaches?
  • What is the role of Critical Political Economy, Marx, and Marxism in the Sociology of the Media and Communication?
  • What is the role and value of Marx today for understanding crisis, change, capitalism, communication, and critique?


Authors are invited to submit their abstract either to the general session (open) or any specific session. Please submit each abstract only to one session. After abstract evaluation, coordinators will have the chance to transfer papers between sessions where applicable.

Abstracts should not exceed 1750 characters (including spaces, approximately 250 words). Each paper session will have the duration of 1.5 hours. Normally sessions will include 4 papers.

Abstracts can only be submitted online no later than 1st of February 2013 to the conference website http://www.esa11thconference.eu. Abstracts sent by email cannot be accepted.

The information requested during abstract submission include: 1) name(s), affiliation(s) and email of all the author(s); 2) contact details of presenting author (postal address, and telephone in addition to email); 3) title of proposed presentation; 4) up to 4 keywords (optional).

Submitting authors will receive an email of acknowledgement of successful submission receipt. Abstracts will be peer-reviewed and selected for presentation by the relevant Research Network or Research Stream; the letter of notification will be sent by the conference software system in early April 2013. Each author cannot submit more than two abstracts (as first author).

Abstract submission deadline: 1 February 2013
Abstract submission platform: 

Barcelona conference

Dear all,

Last week’s CPERN conference was very successful, and we would like to thank everyone who presented and/or attended. The programme was the most diverse since CPERN’s inception, yet there was nevertheless plenty of opportunities for an ongoing conversation – particularly regarding the issue of knowledge production in times of crisis – across the two days. This was particularly evident in the plenary session, when Vicenç Navarro gave a passionate and highly engaging presentation on the current attack against social Europe in the current period.

Personally, as Chair I’d like to thank Mònica Clua-Losada and her team at Universitet Pompeu Fabra for their excellent organisation of the conference, especially given the very difficult conditions that any part of the public sector of Spain is experiencing at the moment.

At the end of the conference we discussed what the network’s Call for Papers could contain for next year’s European Sociological Association conference – http://www.europeansociology.org/conferences.html – and the Board will work over the next couple of weeks to prepare a submission to the ESA. Expect more emails on this in the coming months.

Best wishes,


Final programme: The “Critical” in “Critical Political Economy”, Barcelona, Thursday 20 – Friday 21 September 2012

Dear all,

Please find attached the CPERN – 2012 Barcelona conference – Programme, which takes place later this week.

Best wishes,



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