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Call for papers: Political economy and the outlook for capitalism



The collapse of Lehman Brothers on 16 September 2008 has opened a new stage of economic history, ushering in the world’s worst recession since WWII. The trajectory of global capitalism has been diverse but, after three years of deep crisis, protracted economic problems persist and are even intensifying, notwithstanding accelerated growth in a number of large developing countries.
In the global North, policies implemented in the aftermath of the crisis of financialised capitalism have neither ended the neoliberal agenda nor curbed the demands of a resurgent financial sector. Instead, after a diluted Keynesian moment centred on “quantitative easing”, the governments of the richest countries have launched a new set of neoliberal reforms characterised by harsh austerity measures. From 2009 onwards, this new neoliberal wave has spread progressively from peripheral European countries to the UK, the Eurozone, and now the USA. Along with surging unemployment rates, this economic onslaught, on those who are in no way perceived as accountable for the crisis and slump, promises a period of major social disruption in welfare provision and institutions, pressures on wages and working conditions and, in response across a growing number of countries, multitudes of spontaneous and, occasionally, mass actions as macroeconomic prospects deteriorate.
In the global South, the forces putatively driving catch-up remain limited and highly uneven, with the issue of global imbalances often placed at the forefront in deference to the US’s compromised if continuing hegemonic role. In contrast, not least in the face of the ongoing ecological disruption, the idea of a new frontier for social and economic development and thought is being promoted by a large spectrum of actors, ranging from proponents of no-growth or slow growth through to governments, international institutions and corporations who envisage a revival of capitalism thanks to and in pursuit of the green economy. These initiatives are indicative of an intellectual and material crisis but offer little by way of solution for which, as observed, a savage renewal of neoliberalism serves as the default option.
The scientific issues raised by the corresponding range of problems are formidable, but the blindness and reductionism of mainstream economics prevents them from being tackled within the discipline which has scarcely been disturbed by the acute exposure of its inadequacies by the crisis.
Taking pluralism as the means for bringing together the community of critical economists, this joint conference, called by two major international and one of the largest national networks of political economy and social scientists, will breathe fresh air into an otherwise moribund intellectual atmosphere. It is a major event that will bring together scholars from all strands of political economy and heterodox economics in order to discuss their future and the recent developments in the global economy and in economic science following the global economic crisis.

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Submissions of individual abstract or panel proposals along the following non-exclusive themes are welcomed.

Theoretical Perspectives
Critical Realism in Economics
Feminist economics
Green economics
Institutional economics
Marxist political economy
Post-Keynesian economics
Social Economics

Global economic crisis
Austerity in the global north
The crisis of the Eurozone
Economic crisis and the developing world
China and the world economy
Economics and the Arab world

Ecology: global capitalism and climate change
The global shift of capitalism / Global economy towards a multipolar world
International Financial Institutions
Labour markets

Economics and intradisciplinarity: crossing the disciplinary boundaries
Economic methodology
Economics and philosophy
The ethics of economics
History of economic thought
Mainstream economics: not fit for purpose
Pluralism and economic education

While the Programme Committee is happy to receive proposals for panels, it reserves the right to change the composition of panels or to reject individual papers from panel proposals.

Deadline for abstracts of individual papers and panels: 31st January 2012 (Authors will be notified about the decision of the programme committee by the 15th of March 2012)
Deadline for registration (with reduced fee): 14th May 2012
Deadline for full refereed papers: 14th May 2012
Deadline for non-refereed full papers: 1st June 2012

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