Despite the claims of Guardian journalist Aditya Chakrabortty, social scientists are seriously engaged in addressing and analysing ‘the’ financial crisis. Yesterday, one such initiative, the Austerity Futures programme, met to explore the role of expectations and promises in enacting socio-economic futures.
The next session of the Austerity Futures seminar series has been announced and is scheduled to take place on the 13th of March at the University of York. Here’s the blurb:
Performative futures: expectations, promises and failures pre- and post-austerity
It is often argued that we should understand expectations as ‘constitutive’ or ‘performative’, but more needs to be said about how this is so. How do some visions and expectations of the future emerge as accepted versions of how things will be while others do not? In what ways are these visions altered in an austerity society? What performative role is played by the discourses, events and practices associated with austerity? In what way does austerity articulate with fundamental changes in the restructuring of the state, welfare, the private sector? How do these forces articulation with personal futures, personal liability, risk and individual accountability?
For more info on grant applicants and core members click here.
Next week I’m participating in an PhD training event organised by the Swedish Faculty for Design Research and Research Education entitled ‘Re-Assembling the Social’. Naturally, the event is working on Latourian concepts of the social as well as participation and issue mapping.
Click here for more info.
Alongside my colleague, Tobie Kerridge, I am starting a new MA at Goldsmiths entitled ‘MA Design: Interaction Research‘. The MA will bring together design-led empirical research with concepts and methods derived from STS and cater for students with backgrounds in Design and the Social Sciences.
Here’s a description from the Goldsmiths web site. “Grounded in Interaction Design, this programme offers a unique synthesis of practice-based research and cutting edge sociological concepts and methods, and will equip you to play a leading role in the development and understanding of emerging technology in society. Building on Goldsmiths’ unique position in design-led and sociological research, you will learn how to shape your designs through the collection and analysis of social data, employing cutting-edge research methods. This masters offers you a distinctive opportunity to challenge and develop your existing practice. You will develop the skills and confidence to work in various settings where an understanding of design in society is key. Career paths include design in industry, independent design consultancy and academic research.”
On Friday the 9th of November the first ‘Austerity Futures’ workshop will take place in Lancaster.
Here’s some info from the site:
“Austerity Futures? Imagining and Materialising the Future in an ‘Age of Austerity’ is a two year programme of events that examines whether the current ‘age of austerity’ in the UK, Europe and some other parts of the developed Western world, changes the ways in which the future is imagined, planned for, worked towards and brought into being.
Funded by the Economic and Social Science Research Council and organised by a group of academics based at Lancaster, York, Durham and Goldsmiths, the series of seminars, workshops and conference bring together leading researchers from the UK, America, Canada, Australia and Europe with those working on methodologies for mapping the future in the public, private and third sectors.”