The Autonomy Institute is a new research platform launching in June 2017 for the purpose of rethinking work in our societies. It is a theoretical, political, and economic project. Below you may find a brief description:

“Our aim is to promote real freedom, equality and human flourishing. We are a team of researchers from various disciplines looking to develop this project in collaboration with researchers in relevant fields – but particularly with those working within political philosophy, critical theory, heterodox political economy, sociology, and geography.

Work is at the core of modern society. However, the nature and function of work is continually changing. Currently we see accelerated changes occurring as the result of political, economic, social, and especially technological developments. Through collaborative conscious research we aim to:

  1. Diagnose the developing crises of work in all of its facets.
  2. Propose solutions and generate ideas adequate to a future society and organisation of work that is free, equitable and just.

We believe that in order to face the new challenges that technology and the global economy pose to our working lives, we cannot draw on out-dated analyses or put forward traditional responses: the state of work today requires new thinking on the ground that seeks concrete and progressive solutions. We see the reorganisation of work and society as an opportunity for us to propose programs and policy for a more autonomous world. We seek cutting-edge empirical and theoretical expertise from different disciplines – political economy, philosophy, cultural studies, sociology, robotics and beyond – in order to build alternative models. To that end, Autonomy is a laboratory for new ideas and a platform for innovation on the issue of work.

We are opening a call for abstracts for papers on topics around work – critiques of its present and/or speculations as to its future. The paper should be between 5,000 and 10,000 words, be referenced according to the Chicago referencing system (footnotes: bibliography) and come with a short abstract. The deadline for abstracts is May 15th, please submit the abstract to: [email protected]

Topics could include, but are not limited to:

– Individual case studies of work

– Specific policy proposals on work

– Technologies of social reproduction

– Classes, mobility, and work

– Migration, labour markets and work

– Racial and gendered divisions of labour

– International/comparative political economy of work

– Histories of the philosophy of work

– Theories of value and work

– Classical economic debates about work

– Contemporary legal issues with work

– Lessons and limits of automation

– Dashboards and surveillance at work

– Political economy of a post-work society

– Designs and proposals for a post-work world

– The future of industrial and employment relations

– Unions and their future

– Debates about universal basic income

– The culture and ethics of work

– The architecture of the workplace

If your abstract is accepted, the full paper will be published through our monthly research publication, advertised via our social media channels and, depending on the case, via press releases for the news media.

Any queries, please email: [email protected]

Photo by a.dombrowski

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