Ostrom Speaker Series: Why and How Do Social Relations Matter for Economic Lives?

With Viviana Zelizer

The Ostrom Speaker Series promotes Nobel Laureate in Economics Elinor Ostrom’s intellectual legacy by inviting distinguished scholars to discuss Ostromian ideas and the Bloomington school of political economy in light of the pressing matters of our time.

Oct 17, 2019
4:30pm6:00pm
Center for the Arts, Concert Hall Grand Tier III George Mason University 4373 Mason Pond Dr. Fairfax, Virginia
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Event Speakers

Viviana Zelizer

Lloyd Cotsen ‘50 Professor of Sociology, Princeton University

Why and How do Social Relations Matter for Economic Lives?

Elinor Ostrom’s revolutionary challenge of standard economic arguments bears deep kinship with economic sociologists’ relational accounts of economic life. This lecture will trace economic sociology’s most recent efforts to construct alternative explanations for economic activities, focusing on a set of economic arrangements Zelizer calls “circuits of commerce.”

About the Ostrom Speaker Series

The Ostrom Speaker Series promotes Nobel Laureate in Economics Elinor Ostrom’s intellectual legacy by applying and advancing Ostrom’s ideas to the pressing matters of our time.

Elinor Ostrom, with her husband Vincent Ostrom, created the Ostrom Workshop at the University of Indiana, Bloomington and established a space for collaboration and the contestation of ideas. Ostrom saw the world as a complex and interconnected place, where people find unique ways to overcome collective challenges and live better together. Understanding the world and implementing effective public policy must recognize that there is no one-size-fits-all solution to problems we face. This understanding led her to embrace multiple methods when conducting social science, advocate for polycentric governance, and critique the mainstream traditions in public administration and economics that oversimplified the world.

At Mercatus, we take her warnings and advice seriously and advance a nuanced, multiple method approach to social science based on collaboration and the contestation of ideas.

About Dr. Viviana A. Zelizer

Viviana A. Zelizer is Lloyd Cotsen ‘50 Professor of Sociology at Princeton University. She has published books on the development of life insurance, the changing value of children, the place of money in social life and the economics of intimacy. She has also studied topics ranging from economic ethics to consumption practices. A collection of her essays appears in Economic Lives: How Culture Shapes the Economy. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 2010. In 2017 Princeton University Press published a new edition of her book The Social Meaning of Money, with a preface by Nigel Dodd and an afterword by Zelizer and Columbia University Press published a new edition of Morals and Markets: The Development of Life Insurance in the United States, with a preface by Kieran Healy.  Her most recent book is Money Talks: Explaining How Money Really Works (Princeton University Press, 2017) co-edited with Nina Bandelj and Frederick Wherry. 

Please contact Martha Anderson at manderson@mercatus.gmu.edu with any questions.