From the Washington Consensus to the Wall Street Consensus: researching development in the age of financial globalization

Professor Daniela Gabor
Thursday 12 Mar 2020, 16:00 - 17:00
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Aula B
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Daniela Gabor
Professor Daniela Gabor

In this second of two keynote lectures co-sponsored by CERES research school and the International Institute of Social Studies, Professor Daniela Gabor will discuss the Wall Street Consensus (WSC) and how it reframes the Washington Consensus in the language of the Sustainable Development Goals.

The WSC is an ongoing effort to reorganize development interventions around questions of ‘how to sell development finance to the market’. It reframes the Washington Consensus in the language of the Sustainable Development Goals, and identifies global finance as the critical actor in achieving these, as long as development interventions are reoriented to creating investible SDG assets via PPPs in transportation, infrastructure, health, welfare, education.

At its core, the Wall Street Consensus has a strategy of accumulation by de-risking, seeking to reconfigure the state and its institutional power in order to insulate financial capital from the very dysfunctionalities it creates. It imagines a de-risking state that assumes: 

  • demand risk in PPP user-fee based (social) infrastructure
  • political risks that future governments might introduce progressive legislation (such as minimum wage hikes),
  • climate risks that may become part of green regulations 
  • bond market (liquidity) risks that complicate foreign investors’ exit from SDG assets.

The WSC raises pressing theoretical and activist-research questions: the political economy of the de-risking state, the coalitions between private finance and multilateral development banks, the emergence of green financialization, mechanisms of resistance to the PPP- driven privatization of public services, the potential for a green developmental state that could design a just transition to low-carbon economies.

This event is open to the public - no registration required.

More information

This lecture is the second of two lectures held to mark the opening of the CERES PhD Training Course and the move of CERES to the International Institute of Social Studies.

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