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Economic Sociology: State of Play and Fault Lines for Future Research

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Emerita Professor Raewyn Connell, University of Sydney
Professor Gabrielle Meagher, Macquarie University
Dr Ben Spies-Butcher, Macquarie University
Professor Jocelyn Pixley, Macquarie University
Professor Michael Gilding, Swinburne University

The case for economic sociology is stronger than ever. Internationally, there have been challenges to mainstream economic thought from the likes of Piketty’s Capital in the Twenty-First Century as well as a new defiance to neoliberal governmental practice in Europe, particularly in Greece and Spain.

In Australia, a continuing politics of austerity is underpinned by questions over Australia’s prosperity, with the mining boom over, manufacturing in seemingly terminal decline and housing price speculation ongoing in our major cities. Yet, despite the breadth of research and teaching undertaken by economic sociologists, the field remains fragmented in the Australian social sciences.

This forum gathers five eminent scholars to question the state of play for this sub-discipline, to discuss inter-disciplinary links and the key fault-lines for research and teaching, and to critically explore whether economic sociology is the right ‘frame’ for approaching the study of market society.

University of Sydney
Darlington Centre Conference Room,
Thursday 23 July 5.30pm-7.30pm
Free entry – All welcome

Facebook event page:

Contacts and media enquiries:
Tom Barnes Ph: 0408 619 152
Elizabeth Humphrys Ph: 0402 424 973

Forum organised by The Australian Sociological Association (TASA). Co-sponsored by the Department of Political Economy, University of Sydney.

A TASA Sociology of Economic Life Thematic Group event

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Funding pool for full-time PhD students and casual workers

While this event is in Sydney, we want to maximize participation by TASA members across the country, especially those with an interest in the sociology of economic life. We are exploring how to livestream of the event, so that colleagues based outside Sydney can watch in real time and participate on twitter. To go one step further, we have established a funding pool to subsidize the travel of up to five (5) TASA members on the basis of financial hardship. Successful applications will be awarded $150 to assist with travel/accommodation expenses. To apply, please email with a brief explanation: tell us who you are and why a subsidy will assist you to participate in the event. Please email no later than 3rdJune. The thematic group conveners, Elizabeth Humphrys (Sydney) and Tom Barnes (ACU) will determine the allocation on the basis of need, in consultation with the TASA Executive Officer, and announce the funding allocation on 10th June. We would also like to invite successful applicants to join us for a possible de-brief in Sydney on the day after the event where we can collectively discuss any outcomes and practical organizing to come out of the forum. To be eligible, applicants must be a TASA member living outside metropolitan Sydney and be either a:

  • full-time PhD student;
  • casual academic (non-retired);
  • sociologist employed in casual work outside the university sector (non-retired)