'Marketization' book launch

A launch of the book by Ian Greer and Charles Umney "Marketization: How Capitalist Exchange Disciplines Workers and Subverts Democracy".

On 24 June 2023, CERIC hosted a launch event for Dr Ian Greer and Professor Charles Umney’s new book, Marketization (Bloomsbury). The book examines the role of market competition in the European political economy. Looking at health, welfare, and cultural work in numerous European countries, the book unpicks the often complex and bureaucratic processes through which market competition is created and intensified. Its central argument is that, despite the fact that marketization measures have often proven costly failures, they persist in part because they have been an effective way for governments and businesses to discipline working populations.

The event was very well attended. Alongside the authors, Professor Mark Stuart (Leeds University Business School) and Professor Jill Rubery (Manchester University) provided a critical commentary on the book. Professor Stuart reflected on the implications of the book’s argument, asking how it can be used to understand trends towards monopoly in 21st Century capitalism, and considering the possibility of political movements emerging in opposition to marketization. Professor Rubery pushed the authors to elaborate key concepts in more detail and develop the argument further: how should the role of the state be understood in the context of marketization? What might policy alternatives to marketization be? There was also a series of in-depth contributions and questions from audience members, including how the themes of the book connected to recent developments like Brexit and the changing nature of professional work.

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