Jens Beckert is professor of sociology and director of the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies in Cologne. Beckert was a visiting fellow at the sociology department of Princeton University in 1994/95 and at the Center for European Studies of Harvard University in 2001/02. In 2007/08 he was a Fernand Braudel Fellow at the European University Institute in Florence. In 2012/13 he was a resident at the Institut d¹études avancées in Paris and in 2015/16 visiting researcher at Sciences Po in Paris. In 2018 he received the Leibniz Prize of the German Research Foundation (DFG). His last book “Imagined Futures. Fictional Expectations and Capitalist Dynamics” (2016) has just been published in German under the title “Imaginierte Zukunft. Fiktionale Erwartungen und die Dynamik des Kapitalismus“ (2018).
Role of the economy in society, especially based on studies of markets, organizational sociology, sociology of inheritance, sociological theory
Imagined Futures in Organizations
The project picks up on an issue emerging from my recent book “Imagined Futures and Capitalist Dynamics” (HUP 2016), a book written during my stay at the IEA in 2012-13. While the book investigates fictional expectations in investments, innovation, credit and consumption, it does not pay special attention to organizations and their role in the production of imagined futures. During my stay at the IEA I want to focus on writing a paper which looks at business firms. The paper addresses two questions. First, how and to what extent firms contribute to the production of imagined futures in the economy. And second, how firms themselves are organized around fictional expectations as a means to integrate them and give them direction.