The Politics of Economics [2017-2019]

Alternate Tuesdays 17:15-18:45 during term-time

Seminar Room SG1, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road


The network is now a seminar series part of the Expertise under pressure project and information can be found here.


Economics affects politics, politics affects economics, and there is politics internal to economics. The Politics of Economics will bring different disciplinary angles together for a discussion of these dynamics, and their normative and epistemic consequences. It will examine the ways in which politics and economics have been and are by necessity entwined in order to think about how we can and should structure economic advice.

The network brings together practitioners and academics, and many of the seminars take the discipline of economics as the object of their study using philosophical, sociological and historical approaches. In 2018-19 we are running a theme dispersed throughout the year with several sessions on The Politics of Economic Measurement, including of growth, wellbeing, poverty and inequality. These will consider how forms of quantification frame and shape the knowledge that is produced, and their ramifications in particular political contexts.


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Administrative assistance:



Alice Pearson (PhD Candidate, Social Anthropology) [17-19]
Jack Wright  ( PhD Candidate, History and Philosophy of Science) [17-19]
Raffaele Danna (PhD Candidate, History) [17-19]
Ida A. B. Sognnaes (PhD Candidate, Land Economy) [17-19]
Jostein Hauge (Research Associate, Institute of Manufacturing) [18-19]

Previous convenors
Kim Caspar Hecker (PhD Candidate, POLIS) [17-18]
Jens van 't Klooster (PhD Candidate, Philosophy) [17-18]
Aled Davis (POLIS) [2018]


Jack Wrightis a doctoral candidate in the Department of History and Philosophy of Science. Jack works on scientific pluralism and contextualism and what they mean for economics, with a particular focus on how economic expertise can and should be structured. Jack has also written on the epistemic status of economic modelling and the use of evidence-based and data driven forms of reasoning in policy making. Jack has previous degrees in mathematics, economics, and philosophy.

Alice Pearson is a PhD candidate in the Department of Social Anthropology. Her thesis is based on 12 months ethnographic research of economics education at a university in Northern Europe and addresses questions of performativity, ethics and aesthetics in the discipline. Alice holds a BSc in Government and Economics from LSE and an MPhil in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge.



Raffaele Danna is a PhD candidate at the Faculty of History. His research focuses on the diffusion of the “Commercial Revolution” from Italy to Europe relying mainly on the diffusion of the Hindu-Arabic numeral system between the XIII and the XVI centuries. He holds a BA and an MA in Philosophy from the University of Bologna. He is broadly interested in interdisciplinary approaches to History as well as to contemporary issues, an interest which he fosters also by sitting on the editorial board of Pandora – Rivista di Teoria e Politica.

Ida Sognnaes is a PhD researcher at the Cambridge Centre for Environment, Energy and Natural Resource Governance (C-EENRG) working on the interactions between energy, environment, and economic systems. Her thesis examines the application of integrated economic models to guide sustainable development. Ida has a broad interdisciplinary background centred around environmental issues and has degrees in applied mathematics and physics, political science, and energy and resources. Prior to setting up The Politics of Economics Ida ran Paper 0 for two years.  

Jostein Hauge is a Research Associate at the Centre for Science, Technology & Innovation Policy, a research group at the Institute for Manufacturing. His research interests include economic development, the role of the state in economic change, technological paradigms, industrialisation, international trade, and globalisation. Jostein holds a PhD in Development Studies from the University of Cambridge, an MSc in Development Economics from the University of London's School of Oriental and African Studies, and a BSc in Economics from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology.


Previous convenors [2017-18]

Kim Hecker is a PhD candidate at the Department of Politics and International Studies looking at the relationship between contemporary perspectives on technological change and 20th century political thought. His wider research interests range from topics relating to philosophy of technology to 'realist' political theory.




Jens van 't Klooster is a PhD candidate in Philosophy who works on financial markets, distributive justice, and related topics. His dissertation is titled ‘How to make money: Distributive justice, finance and monetary constitutions’ and makes a case for money and finance as a central concepts of political philosophy.   



Faculty Advisors

Dr Stephen John (Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Science)
Dr Anna Alexandrova (Lecturer in History and Philosophy of Science)
Dr Ha-Joon Chang (Reader in Economics and Director of the Centre of Development Studies)
Professor David Runciman (Professor of Politics and Head of POLIS)
Professor Simon Szreter (Faculty of History)

Programme 2018-19

Politics of Economics

Past events

Politics of Economics