In technologically driven markets, accelerated transactions create an ever more dense succession of crises. At the same time, the universalistic credo of growth, progress and prosperity persists. In the digital economy, machines and algorithms are increasingly making decisions, taking action and working – and have long become powerful market players. What basic assumptions about the human-machine-work relationship underlie this form of market? How are decisions made in these constellations and what cultural and political implications does that have? How is the community-building function of markets changing in a world of block chains and crypto currency? And what forms of criticism and resistance are still possible?
Karin Knorr-Cetina, Philip Mirowski and Nick Srnicek discuss the limits of an idea of the market on the basis of which more and more spheres of life experience a comprehensive financialization accelerated by digitalization.
With interventions by the Chor der Kulturen der Welt under the direction of Barbara Morgenstern and Philipp Neumann
Karin Knorr Cetina is a sociologist and philosopher of science well known for her work on epistemology and social constructionism, summarized in the books The Manufacture of Knowledge: An Essay on the Constructivist and Contextual Nature of Science (1981) and Epistemic Cultures: How the Sciences Make Knowledge (1999). Currently, she focuses on the study of global microstructures and social studies of finance. Knorr Cetina received a Ph.D. in Cultural Anthropology (with a minor in sociology) from the University of Vienna in 1971. Currently, she is the Otto Borchert Distinguished Service Professor (Jointly Appointed in Anthropology) and Chair of the Department of Sociology at the University of Chicago.
Philip Mirowski is Carl Koch Professor of Economics and the History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Notre Dame. He is the author of, among others, The Knowledge we have Lost in Information (2017), Machine Dreams (2001), ScienceMart (2011), and Never Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste (2013). He has been visiting professor at different universities worldwide. The conference Neoliberalism, Its Ontology and Genealogy: The Work and Context of Philip Mirowski devoted to his work was held by the boundary 2 collective in 2017. Outside of the economics profession, he is perhaps best known for his work on the history and political philosophy of neoliberalism, and his methodological watchword that intellectual history is the story of thought collectives, not heroic individuals.
Nick Srnicek (1982 in Canada) is a lecturer in digital economy at King's College London. He is the recent author of Platform Capitalism, as well as the co-author of Inventing the Future: Postcapitalism and a World Without Work (with Alex Williams). With Helen Hester, he has a new book coming out on the interchange between social reproduction and anti-work politics, entitled After Work: The Politics of Free Time. His next research project will be examining the political economy of AI and the ways in which machine learning and big data are generating monopolies of power and profit within contemporary capitalism, and what this may mean for the future of the economy.