Economic geography unbound: Polanyian diversions

Monday, 5 October
12.00 – 1.30 pm
SS 1085

The presentation develops the argument that, in both a formal and a temperamental sense, contemporary Anglo-American economic geography is a heterodox enterprise. A methodological intervention is proposed, inspired by the substantivist economics of Karl Polanyi and the unfinished project of ‘comparative economy’. The intention is to open up a different kind of heterodox dialogue between economic geography’s ‘lumpers’, those working on the refinement and reconstruction generalized categories of analysis, and its ‘splitters’, who in contrast are inclined to work against (or outside) such tacitly accepted categories, favoring their deconstruction and displacement. It is suggested that, even if lumpers and splitters are never entirely comfortable in one another’s company, they should not be allowed to live apart.


Jamie Peck is Canada Research Chair in Urban & Regional Political Economy and Professor of Geography at the University of British Columbia. The recipient of Guggenheim and Harkness fellowships, he was previously Professor of Geography & Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Professor of Geography at the University of Manchester. An economic geographer, his research interests include the political economy of neoliberalism, labor studies, the politics of policy formation and mobility, economic governance, and urban restructuring. Jamie Peck’s recent publications include: Fast policy: experimental statecraft at the thresholds of neoliberalism (2015, with Nik Theodore), the Wiley-Blackwell Companion to Economic Geography (2012, coedited with Trevor Barnes & Eric Sheppard), and Constructions of neoliberal reason (2010).


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