Call for Papers: 'Odious Investment', University of Manchester, July 2023

Alexia Yates's picture
Call for Papers
January 30, 2023
United Kingdom
Subject Fields: 
Business History / Studies, Colonial and Post-Colonial History / Studies, Economic History / Studies, Environmental History / Studies, Social History / Studies

Conference: Odious Investment: How Finance Creates, Shapes, and Sustains Global Inequalities

The Centre for Economic Cultures at the University of Manchester (UK) invites proposals for contributions to an international conference exploring the history of investment in controversial enterprises, particularly environmentally destructive ventures, unfree labour, and corruption. We approach this topic at a global scale and in the longue durée, from the early modern period to the present day. The notion of “odious investment” is a provocation that aims to put the social, environmental, and political costs of investment at the centre of our financial histories, and to compose actor-centred accounts. In doing so, we believe we will learn important things about how ordinary people make sense of their roles as financial actors and their contributions to the cultural and political authority of modern finance, allowing us to clarify linkages between capital, its globalization, and the everyday. At the same time, we encourage discussion of the cultural and intellectual systems that informed and shaped investment and facilitated (or stymied) the translation of economic action into moral categories.

Submissions from any discipline are welcome, provided the author's approach engages substantially with historical research and debate. 

Proposals are due by January 30, 2023, and the workshop will convene on 6-7 July 2023. For more information, please see the full call for papers:

Questions may also be directed to conference organizers: Dr. Alexia Yates ( and Dr. Edmond Smith (


Contact Info: 

Dr. Alexia Yates, Senior Lecturer in Modern History, University of Manchester