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“Logic” of Our Age: The Individual and Society in the Market’s Grasp


International Political Economy Conference series began with the theme “Adam Smith Today” in 2009, which was followed by “Crisis and Development” in 2010, “Labor Markets and Employment” in 2011, and “Flexibility” in 2012. The theme of the fifth conference has been determined as “ ‘Logic’ of Our Age: The Individual and Society in the Market’s Grasp” and will be co-organized by Kocaeli University (Turkey), University of Westminster (England), Silesian University in Opava (Czech Republic), Institute for Economic & Social Research of Piedmont (IRES, Italy), Ostrava Technical University (Czech Republic),  Çanakkale Onsekiz Mart University and supported by Turkish Social Sciences Association, The Journal of Industrial Relations and Human Resources (ISGUC.ORG), Work & Society Journal, International Journal of Politics & Economics (England), Research in Political Economy (USA), Academia Social Sciences Index (ASOS Index) and IJOPEC Publishing (London - Istanbul). In addition, The Scientific and Technological Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK), Central Bank of Turkey, Isbank, Kocaeli  Chamber of Undustry, Greatest Municipality of Kocaeli, United Metal Workers’ Union, Union of Petroleum Cchemical and Rubber Workers of Turkey, Turkey Cooperatives, Commerce and Office Workers' Union, Turkey’s Hotel, Restaurant and Entartainmen Workers’ Trade Union, Union of Cement, Glass, Earthen-ware and Seramic Industry Workers, Union of Tobacco, Alcoholic Beverage, Food and Related Industry Workers of Turkey and PSI have provided fiscal support. The conference will be held in Kocaeli on 23-24 October 2013.

This year’s conference aims to revisit neoliberalism as a discourse by focusing on the new mindset it has created to understand the world in the last few decades. During this process, while resource allocation has been left to the market dynamics, on the basis of the idea of efficiency, social preferences have been shaped by the supply-demand mechanism rather than by politics. The rightist mind, which has always been skeptical of reason, used to consider traditions; now the New Right relies merely on the market. While a sense of solidarity has been abandoned even in the basic realms of life, decision making mechanisms have been increasingly based upon market logic. Though it is open to all areas of investigation, the focal point of the conference will be to explore the logic of the New Right in all realms of society. Rather than discussing neoliberalism within the limits of debates related to governmentality, hegemony and ideology, and only in terms of economics, this conference intends to generate a ground through which the new mindset of the neoliberal age is explored as the driving force in overall transformation of the individual and society. The new mentality has been ingrained in the individual and society so deeply that it needs to be deciphered and discussed within all possible paths.

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