This research project consists of a socio-anthropological exploration of ongoing processes of financial transformation in the post-2008 European Union. Three different but complementary research paths are empirically explored:
1. The inter-institutional articulations and collaborations presently going on at the levels of supervision and regulation with the aim of gathering and producing new types of knowledge ― i.e. distinct from the hitherto dominant model-based approaches ― for the oversight of financial organizations;
2. The growing level of politicization exemplified by emergent citizen movements striving to withdraw finance from strict technocratic control and inscribe it within contemporary political agendas;
3. Financial artisanship and monetary pluralism, as testified by new alternatives and experimentations aiming at socially re-embedding both money and finance.
The research collects and draws upon relevant empirical evidence from not only state and market sources but also third sector fields in order to set out lay perspectives alongside those of official money producers and academic theorists and thus generate a better and more updated perception on the foundations of collective trust in money and finance ― one that does not separate between official and alternative finance and makes recourse to neither the taken-for-granted character of technical facts nor to the fictitious character of social conventions. The general empirical context consists of the European Union in a time of uncertainty, struck by remarkable efforts towards financial reform as well as the sovereign debt crisis and austerity policies ongoing in a number of countries. The method is strongly ethnographic, implying a minimum of four case-studies, 80 formal interviews and 2-3 short-term periods of intensive fieldwork are expected. Participant observation of events, archival survey and collaborative forms of research through websites, discussion forums and public consultations will also be generally used.
HOST INSTITUTION: CSG/SOCIUS (School of Economics and Management, University of Lisbon).