4th EMES-Polanyi International Seminar

Call for papers

From the great transformation to the eco-social transition. New solidarities in action

Seminar background

Following the 2018 seminar which explored how a Polanyian framework may contribute to identify a possible way forward for the welfare state in an international perspective, the 4th EMES-Polanyi seminar will address the emergence of transition as a new paradigm. When the welfare states matured in the wake of the Second World War, they seemed to provide a horizon of emancipation. However, in recent decades it has become clear that another notion of transition is needed. Built upon representative democracy and the assurance of social progress through the decommodification of activities such as healthcare, social democracy faced two limits by the end of the century : regulations designed at a national level by experts transformed citizens from partners in a social contract (social citizenship) to subscribers or clients and political redistribution linked social justice to economic growth.

Seminar thematic approach

The hypothesis for this seminar is that all the research on different issues such as associations, social and solidarity economy, social enterprise, social innovation, social movements, ecological alternatives, sustainable transition studies be integrated into the paradigm of transition.

Contributions may address these issues and their interesections. Based on the two epistemological options described above, they are encouraged to address the uncertainties of the current situation that cast a shadow over democracy and emerging practices aimed at strengthening it.

To foster the re-embeddeness of the formal economy in the XXIst century, there is a strong need to explore the relationship between the concepts of transformation and transition. Academic papers able to bridge and combine sustainability transitions studies with Polanyian studies are welcome.

Important dates

  • 8 January 2020 Deadline for abstract submission
  • 20 January 2020 Registration opens
  • 15 January 2020 Communication to authors


Co-organised par le Collège d’études mondiales - Fondation Maison des sciences de l’homme,  EMPOWER-SE COST Action, EMES International Research Network, Karl Polanyi Institute of Political Economy

Mis à jour le
04 October 2019
Call for paper

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