Senior Researcher, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, Cologne; John F. Kennedy Memorial Fellow 2016-2017, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University; Visiting Scholar 2016-2017, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
Writer & Translator; Local Affiliate & Seminar Co-chair, Minda de Gunzburg Center for European Studies, Harvard University
November 16, 2016
12:15pm - 1:15pm
Hoffmann Room, Adolphus Busch Hall
To explain when and how finance wins, political economists have studied the financial sector’s instrumental and structural power. This paper develops the concept of infrastructural power as a third, complementary variant. Theoretically, the argument is based on the observation that state actors, in addition to acting on markets, also act in markets. Central banking is the clearest manifestation of such market-based state agency. The paper analyzes the origins and manifestations of this infrastructural power by tracing the alliances the European Central Bank has formed with the two key pillars of market-based banking, the repo and the securitization markets.