Uncertain Futures: Imaginaries, Narratives, and Calculation in the Economy

Uncertain Futures: Imaginaries, Narratives, and Calculation in the Economy

Jens Beckert Richard Bronk / Jan 26, 2020

Uncertain Futures Imaginaries Narratives and Calculation in the Economy Uncertain Futures considers how economic actors visualize the future and decide how to act in conditions of radical uncertainty It starts from the premise that since dynamic capitalist economies are

  • Title: Uncertain Futures: Imaginaries, Narratives, and Calculation in the Economy
  • Author: Jens Beckert Richard Bronk
  • ISBN: 9780198820802
  • Page: 359
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Uncertain Futures considers how economic actors visualize the future and decide how to act in conditions of radical uncertainty It starts from the premise that, since dynamic capitalist economies are characterized by relentless innovation and novelty, they exhibit an indeterminacy that cannot be reduced to measurable risk The organizing question then becomes how economicUncertain Futures considers how economic actors visualize the future and decide how to act in conditions of radical uncertainty It starts from the premise that, since dynamic capitalist economies are characterized by relentless innovation and novelty, they exhibit an indeterminacy that cannot be reduced to measurable risk The organizing question then becomes how economic actors form expectations and make decisions despite the uncertainty they face.The current microfoundations of standard economics cannot handle genuinely uncertain futures Instead uncertainty requires an entirely new model of economic reasoning This edited volume lays the foundations for this new model by showing how economic actors form expectations in conditions of uncertainty It draws on groundbreaking research in economic sociology, economics, anthropology, and psychology to present theoretically grounded empirical case studies that demonstrate the role of imaginaries, narratives, and calculative technologies in coping with uncertain futures.Uncertain Futures Imaginaries, Narratives, and Calculation in the Economy examines risk management techniques, finance models, and discounted cash flow models, as well as methods of envisaging the future that overtly combine calculation with narrative structure and imaginaries These include central bank forward guidance, economic forecasts, business plans, visions of technological futures, and new era stories Considerable attention is given to how these fictional expectations influence behaviour, coordinate action, and provide the confidence to act, and how they become instruments of power in markets and societies The market impact of shared calculative devices, social narratives, and contingent imaginaries underlines the rationale for a new form of narrative economics.

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