Call for Abstracts: Price, value and worth: Conceptualizing social practices of (e)valuation.

Call for abstracts for panel entitled “Price, value and worth: Conceptualizing social practices of (e)valuation” at the International Sociological Association’s World Congress next summer in Toronto, Canada, 15-21 July 2018.  This will be one of 13 sessions organized by Research Committee 35 Conceptual and Terminological Analysis, and one of 23 sessions organized by the Economy & Society research committee (RC02).  Although the conference is next summer, the deadline for submitting abstracts is fast approaching:  September 30, 2017, 24:00 GMT.

Valuation and evaluation are widespread social practices. Investigating these practices is essential to understanding how social order comes about and changes over time. With the spread of capitalism, (e)valuations have come to be understood primarily in economic terms. And with the spread of neoliberalism and market fundamentalism, governments and organizations are increasingly turning to valuation mechanisms to quantify the worth of people, processes, and outcomes. For example, credit rating agencies evaluate individuals’ creditworthiness, bank stress tests evaluate banks’ stability, and stock markets evaluate corporations’ worth. One of the striking characteristics of such market valuations is that they create commensurations that are interpreted as objective, informed, depersonalized, apolitical and expert. Despite such apparently successful abstracting, a leitmotif in a number of research programs (e.g., the New Economic Sociology, and current reformulations of Critical Theory) is that the economy and social life are not separate spheres with distinctive values and practices. Exploring this productive tension, this joint session of RC02 and RC35 calls for conceptual as well as theoretically-informed empirical papers that investigate the beliefs, values and practices embedded in diverse social practices of (e)valuation and the role and functions of (e)valuations as well as devaluations for the reproduction and development of contemporary society.  We particularly encourage papers that unpack social processes of price formation, valuation, and the assessment of worth.

To submit an abstract, go to:

If you have any questions, please contact either of the organizers:
Aaron Z. Pitluck, Illinois State University,
David Strecker, University of Jena,

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