Max Planck Partner Group for the Study of the Economy and the Public
In 2020, the MPIfG and Universidad Central de Chile together set up an international Max Planck Partner Group in Chile. Led by Felipe González, the Partner Group will develop into a platform for exchange and networking with researchers in the region and promote the institutionalization of economic sociology in Chile. As its main area of interest, the Partner Group investigates the politics of economic expectations in the public sphere and draws in its research on the fields of economic sociology, and communication. Max Planck Partner Groups are established to support outstanding young researchers who have already held a position at a Max Planck Institute and are returning to their country of origin. The Max Planck Society works here with countries that are seeking to strengthen their research base through international collaboration.
Economic sociology is an emerging field in Latin America, and Chile is currently hosting a significant number of young scholars who have devoted their careers to developing the “social studies of the economy” field. The goal of the Partner Group for the Study of the Economy and the Public is to promote the institutionalization of economic sociology in Chile, supporting research activities and collaboration between the Faculty of Economics, Government and Communications at the Universidad Central de Chile and the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies. The main area of study of the Partner Group is the politics of economic expectations in the public sphere. Economic expectations define social and political processes beyond the economic sphere, such as electoral outcomes, changes in public opinion, and decision-making among policymakers. Research conducted by the Partner Group will draw on the fields of economic sociology, social media, and communication studies to investigate how actors in the economy and politics interact with the media to shape the way ordinary citizens perceive distant economic processes that are the basis of their expectations. The second area of investigation is the financialization of households and the politics of debt. Worldwide, governments have relied on financial deregulation and the extension of credit as a way to provide public goods. The Partner Group investigates the social and political conflicts that arise from the financialization of social policy, as well as the relationship between debt, social structure, and inequality.