SPERI Advisory Board member wins IPEG book prize

Congratulations to our International Advisory Board member Jamie Peck, who has won the IPEG Book Prize. You can find the official statement below or visit his profile to find out more about Jamie and his work.


BISA International Political Economy Group (IPEG) Book Prize, 2011

This year the IPEG prize panellists are delighted to announce the award of the annual book prize to Jamie Peck’s Constructions of Neoliberal Reason (Oxford University Press, 2010), which brings neoliberalism to earth by analysing its contradictory and socially produced policy failures and policy adaptations. Jamie Peck has delivered an exceptional work in historical geography on the process of neoliberalisation, understood as an open-ended and contradictory process of politically-assisted market-like rule. His book will be a must read for those wanting to understand the social history of neoliberalisation.

From neoliberalism’s ‘lost history’ in the form of the Ordoliberal project (linked to diasporic German intellectuals in the 1930s), to the Chicago School, to the promise and practice of present-day Obamanomics, Jamie Peck delivers a work of remarkable erudition in offering a fresh perspective on the uneven geographical reconstruction of neoliberal rule.

Focusing on the dialectical processes of “roll-back” neoliberalism (associated with initial restructuring projects dismantling labour unions, public institutions, or welfare policies) and “roll-out” neoliberalism (predominant in mechanisms of selective empowerment of community initiative and NGOs, or devolved governance, or public-private partnerships), Constructions of Neoliberal Reason is an important and impressive study in tackling and understanding neoliberalisation as a contested process of permanent revolution.

In confronting the faceless tendency to abandon the term of neoliberalism itself, Jamie Peck tackles head-on the variegated dominant guises of neoliberalism as a polymorphic phenomenon. At the same time, his analysis does not condone a descent into hair-splitting neoliberalism as a series of infinite varieties, or disparate and contingent formations. Rather than highlighting contingent exceptions to a non-existent template, Constructions of Neoliberal Reason unpacks neoliberalism as a constructed project that has always been about the capture and reuse of the state in the interests of shaping a pro-corporate “market order”.

Neoliberalism, as so brilliantly argued in this book, is a process of regulation-in-denial. This much needed intervention in and beyond International Political Economy (IPE) debate provides readers with stimulating material to tackle both present and future rounds of neoliberal adaptation as a form of market rule. The IPEG panel judges congratulate Jamie Peck in winning the award for this year’s prize.

Previous awardees:

2006   Graham Harrison, The World Bank and Africa: The Construction of Governance States (Routledge, 2004)

2007   Donald MacKenzie, An Engine, Not a Camera: How Financial Models Shape Markets (mit Press, 2006)

2008   Matthew Patterson, Automobile Politics: Ecology and Cultural Political Economy (CambridgeUniversity Press, 2007)

2009   William Robinson, Latin America and Global Capitalism: A Critical Globalization Perspective (JohnsHopkinsUniversity Press, 2008)

2010   Penny Griffin, Gendering the World Bank: Neoliberalism and the Gendered Foundations of Global Governance (Palgrave, 2009)

2011   Jamie Peck, Constructions of Neoliberal Reason (OxfordUniversity Press, 2010)