Market Engineering: Making and Solving Problems with Markets

Publikation: KonferencebidragPaperForskningpeer review


Market design has become an established and prominent mode of economic expertise. Market designers claim to know how to create and repair markets, often with a view to specific collective purposes such as reducing harmful emissions or improving school choice. This text suggests that market design calls for market studies to inquire into market engineering as a form of market work, distinguishable from other forms of market organizing. In doing so, we draw on history of economics as well as ethnographic studies of engineering projects. Second, we borrow the idea of market misfires to develop an analytical strategy to study market engineering. Often the work of market-engineering is done in response to situations of market-failures, when a previously marketized situation does not deliver. If we want to understand the specificity of the work of market-engineering, we should not only study misfires in the sense of unexpected effects of given market-framing efforts, we should understand how failures open for new technical problematizations and those re-problematization becomes the basis of market-engineering’s market design. Third, we illustrate empirically how market engineering is called upon to solve collective problems with examples from two types of collective concerns, fair access to school education and sustainable energy. A discussion concludes the paper.
Antal sider20
StatusUdgivet - 2023
Begivenhed38th EGOS Colloquium 2022: Organizing: The Beauty of Imperfection - Vienna University of Economics and Business, Wien, Østrig
Varighed: 7 jul. 20229 jul. 2022
Konferencens nummer: 38


Konference38th EGOS Colloquium 2022
LokationVienna University of Economics and Business