Center for Interdisziplinary Research

A New Spirit of Capitalism?

Paradoxa and Ambiguities of the Network Economy

Date: December 15 - 17, 2005
Organizers: Philipp Hessinger (Magdeburg), Gabriele Wagner (Bielefeld)

Since Weber's famous study on Protestantism and the "Spirit of Capitalism " there has been an ongoing debate concerning the cultural foundations of modern economy. This debate was renewed by the French sociologists Boltanski and Chiapello, who argued that there is a basic cultural pattern of modern network capitalism to be discerned. The aim of the workshop was to discuss the ambiguities and paradoxes of network capitalism in that perspective. The workshop was divided in four sections. The first section was dealing with changes in the Images of the "self". In the second section structural features of network capitalism were discussed by referring to Weber's hypothesis. The main topics of the third section were institutional myths of network Organisation and network management. Finally a fourth section was dealing with the problems of the so-called "subjectisation" of work and working life

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