Centre

Centre for Research in Economic Sociology and Innovation

Part of Department of Sociology

We are interdisciplinary, global and comparative in scope, addressing big issues facing the world today.

Our Centre for Research in Economic Sociology and Innovation (CRESI) highlights transformation processes of socio-economies, both contemporary and historical.

We provide a space for the development of a shared set of theoretical and empirical interests, encouraging dialogue between different perspectives and approaches in order to advance the field of economic sociology.

On the basis of our breadth and range of research interests, our combination of economic sociology and political and cultural economy, our interest in the multi-modality of capitalist economies, and a strong focus on consumption and innovation, we have developed a distinctive identity.

A strong feature of our research culture is the global reach of our research, and an approach that is both historical and comparative. International collaborative research in Europe, USA, South America and the Asia Pacific are established areas of our research.

What we do

Our history

CRESI was established by Founding Director Professor Mark Harvey in 2007. Professor Harvey is the author of numerous influential books, including, most recently, Inequality and Democratic Egalitarianism: 'Marx's Economy and Beyond' and Other Essays (2018, authored with Norman Geras). With his strong research focus on political economy, the circulation of global commodities, and theories of economic justice, Professor Harvey positioned CRESI to play an important role in national and international discussions about efforts to combat growing global economic inequality and environmental degradation. As Emeritus Professor at the University of Essex, Professor Harvey remains an involved and inspiring presence at CRESI. 

In 2017, Professor Linsey McGoey became Director of CRESI, with Dr. Katy Wheeler as Deputy Director.

Our research areas

We draw together strengths from our Department of Sociology in a number of areas, including:

  • climate change
  • the finitude of earth's resources (land, water, energy)
  • systems of provision and consumption
  • economic and social rights
  • cultural economy
  • welfare regimes and pensions
  • slavery and forced labour, historical and contemporary
  • food and consumption
  • the pharmaceutical industry
  • work and employment
  • internet economies, formal and informal
  • gender budgeting and fiscal sociology
  • biotechnology and bioeconomy
  • economies of knowledge
  • waste and recycling

Collaborative research within the Department of Sociology is strongly supported, as is interdisciplinary research with our researchers and staff in other parts of the University. We have close links the Institute of Social and Economic Research (ISER), Essex Business School and Health and Human Sciences.

Our theoretical approaches

A number of economic sociology approaches are strongly represented within the Centre. These include:

  • network theory
  • fiscal sociology
  • political economy
  • political ecology
  • economic and social rights theory
  • neo-Polanyian approaches
  • sociology of consumption
  • economic history
  • cultural economy and history

We aim to stimulate dialogue between these approaches, and with closely related intellectual traditions such as innovation studies, evolutionary economics, the new geography, feminist economics, institutional economics, management and accountancy.


Events

We hold a regular series of seminars and workshops to develop our research culture. These create a space for discussion of ongoing research, and allow you to test out research ideas in a friendly and supportive environment.

Archived Events

13 December 2018

A seminar by Adam Arvidsson, University of Naples, Federico II, in association with the Centre for Work, Organisation and Society (CWOS)

"Industrious Modernity. On the future of digital capitalism"

12 December 2018

A seminar by Ayo Wahlberg, University of Copenhagen, in association with the Centre for Intimate and Sexual Citizenship (CISC)

"From Family Planning to Family Making: Assisted Reproduction in China"

22 November 2018

A reading session led by Sandya Hewamanne, University of Essex, on Anna Tsing’s book, The Mushroom at the End of the World (2017)

15 November 2018

A plenary address given by Linsey McGoey at the launch event of the Centre for the Study of Contemporary Solidarity, University of Vienna

"Solidarity and the Current Political Economy"

13-14 November 2018

A keynote lecture by Linsey McGoey at the University of Vienna

"The value of the new ignorance studies” Ignorance and non-knowledge: what consequences for democratic governance, politics and policy?"

12 November 2018

A talk by Linsey McGoey at the Hudson Institute

"The Gates Foundation and the Price of Philanthropy"

11 November 2018

A talk by Linsey McGoey at New York book launch, The New School

"No Such Thing as a Free Gift"

1 November 2018

A seminar by Giorgio Griziotti held jointly with the Centre for Work, Organisation and Society CWOS

"Neurocapitalism: Technological Mediation and Vanishing Lines"

Chaired by Stevphen Shukaitis from Essex Business School

25 October 2018

A seminar by Francesco Ramella, University of Torino 

"Systems of Innovation in Hard Times: The South European Experience"

Chaired by Mark Harvey (Department of Sociology)

Working paper series

Our working paper series is internally refereed and a central vehicle for the dissemination of our research. It aims to achieve rapid and wide dissemination of the achievements arising from the full range of our research projects, as well as provide a route to publication for doctoral students. Since it has been established, it has a record of high levels of downloads across the world.

  • Click here to visit our research repository and browse our working paper series

 

Doctoral students

CRESI staff are recognised experts in their fields and are frequently asked to give advice to national government departments, local authorities, NGOs and commercial organisations. Projects have included advice on business strategies, masterclasses and workshop sessions as well as contributions to steering boards and reviews of evidence.

The Centre provides a focus and magnet both for existing PhD students currently supervised by staff in the Department of Sociology, and for attracting new students. The series of seminars and workshops will assist the development of a research culture and identity around economic sociology. By stimulating interaction and enhancing the cohesion of a substantial part of the Department’s research activity, we provide a forum for developing research agendas. We encourage you, as a doctoral student, to get involved in our research projects, giving you the opportunity to participate directly in the core research of the Centre. You will be very much ‘part of the team’ of a already supportive research environment.

Get in touch
Get in touch
Centre for Research in Economic Sociology and Innovation University of Essex
Wivenhoe Park, Colchester, CO4 3SQ
Department of Sociology University of Essex
Wivenhoe Park, Colchester, CO4 3SQ
Telephone: 01206 873049