The 32nd Annual EAEPE Conference 2020

By anita

European Association for Evolutionary Political Economy (EAEPE) annual conference, 2-4 September 2020, Bilbao (SP)

The Evolution of Capitalist Structures: Uncertainty, Inequality, and Climate Crisis – Official conference website

For the first time in decades there are signs that global economic integration is now threatened, while challenges posed by the processes of internationalization and globalization, rising inequality in income distribution are accompanied by new forms of risk. Greater military and environmental insecurity has forced people from their homes to seek safety abroad. Environmental collapse has changed from a possibility into a process and, soon, an inevitability. National political systems, including democracies, have been stressed by these changes creating hybrid forms of authoritarianism. International forms of cooperation that were seen to order world politics are also experiencing dramatic change.

Given the uncertainties and complexity of these structural changes and the threat of an increasingly instable global ecosystem, alternative theoretical and methodological approaches capable of representing and interpreting these disequilibria are required. The conference invites delegates to open up their discussion of the dynamics of economic evolution in late capitalism and to test established and novel interpretations of capitalist structure. 

These might include stock-flow, integrated assessment, agent-based modelling and network analysis or they may address particular challenges such as the consequences of cumulatively worsening climate change. Macroeconomic policies need to gain new inspirations from ecological economics and political ecology, e.g. steady-state perspectives or even confronting the growth imperative of capitalist evolution. We may also address how hegemonic political economic goals, such as achieving price stability and controlling public debt via austerity policies make it difficult to provide the necessary means for labour and the environment. 

The conference will provide unique opportunities to revisit the foundations of inequalities and structural change, to discuss alternative points of view at the macro, meso and micro levels, and to enrich traditional evolutionary background with diverse fields such as complexity science, biology, political and international studies, development studies, physics, philosophy sociology, history of thought, and management science among others. The aim is to provide new empirical evidences and fresh insights for policy makers to understand the complexity of structural change and to redefine innovation and formulate new innovation policies. In doing so we aim to allow a rethinking of the role of the State in relation to transition issues; to define and build commons to manage environmental issues; to establish new partnerships with developing countries; to investigate new ways of consuming and producing; to shape new institutions to manage these structural changes; to redefine social interactions related to demand and the labour market; to define new business models relevant to the internet age; to identify new organizing principles in the context of a knowledge economy; and to finance and participate in a greener economy.