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DECO 2080A - Sociology of Markets

Type d'enseignement : Elective

Semester : Autumn 2017-2018

Number of hours : 24

Language of tuition : English


A background in Sociology and Economics is helpful. Nevertheless, general texts will be recommended for an introduction to the general approach of the course and the first sessions will be destined to a revision of key concepts.

Course Description

Mainstream economics understand the economy as the outcome of rational forces coming together even when there is some acknowledgement that there is something beyond that simplification. Sociology – amongst other social sciences (including some branches in critical economics) – claims that economic decisions, that are normally characterized by high levels of uncertainty and even when they have a clear rational objective (i.e. like the maximization of utility), rely on social devices such as norms, traditions, power constrains, family and friendship ties. The core objective of this course is to explore the contributions of sociology to understanding the complexity of economic phenomena and, particularly, of markets. In that sense, the course will start by reviewing some key elements on the way economic life and markets are addressed in classical and contemporary. We will then move to study the specific sociological studies of markets where we will critically engage with several key discussions: the embeddedness of markets in other social structures, the role of cognitive mechanisms and devices, economists making markets, among others. With the elements discussed through the course, the students will have the opportunity to explore specific markets from a sociological perspective.


CHIRIBOGA, Andrés E. (Doctorant)

Required reading

The Sociology of Economic Life (Granovetter and Swedberg 2001)

Additional required reading

  • Principles of Economic Sociology (Swedberg 2007)
  • Market Society (Slater and Tonkiss 2000)
  • The laws of Markets (Callon 1998)
  • Information, Knowledge and Economic Life (Preda 2009)