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My working papers, and other junk.
Here you can download in PDF my working papers and other writings. I warmly welcome any comments, suggestions or criticisms!
Published stuff
- Review of the books: „Greta Krippner: Capitalizing on Crisis: The Political Origins of the Rise of Finance“ and „Wolfgang Streeck: Buying Time: The Delayed Crisis of Democratic CapitalismCzech Sociological Review, 2015, Vol. 51, No. 6, p. 1108-1113 (pdf)
Working papers
- Private Debt, Public Virtues (SSRN)
The aim of this article is to explain the different levels of private indebtedness in a number of selected countries. Previous sociological literature has tried to explain indebtedness by the quantity of welfare spending, searching for a relation between the lack of welfare and the increase of household-debt. In this theoretically oriented paper, I argue that to understand the influence of welfare on debt, the quality of welfare spending matters more than the quantity. The institutional qualities of different welfare regimes may influence people, making them more or less risk adverse towards borrowing money. In northern countries, higher debt ratios are more common because social protection is more extensive, while in continental countries, where welfare benefits are more narrow and and tend to target the already employed and the elderly, people are more risk adverse toward debt. The proposed theory is supported by an illustrative empirical analysis using data from the LIS and Comparative Welfare Entitlements Dataset.

- The surprising origins and legacy of Irving Fisher’s crankish ideas
During the 1930s and up until his death in 1947, Fisher proposed an original interpretation of the causes of the crisis and several possible fixes. His propositions were radically different from the mainstream, orthodox narratives of his time and were partly inspired by the work and insight of so-called cranks, in particular that of Silvio Gesell and Fredrik Soddy. The works of the late Fisher were an interesting syncretism between the most orthodox quantitative theory and the most eccentric methods. The aim of the paper is to show the continuity and coherence of Irving Fisher’s thinking throughout his life. His later works, often described as a delusional development of his thought are, in fact, very consistent with his early work on the quantity theory of money.

- Welfare–Debt Trade-off: It's the Denominator, Stupid!
"...As I mentioned above, scholars have delineated two main correlations: deregulation of the financial sector and welfare safety nets may boost private debt; and the same could be said for welfare reattachment or welfare privatization. While both propositions sound reasonable, they must be tested. I propose here a third hypothesis, as an effort to integrate those two visions. I do not think we can reach a “one-size-fits-all” type of explanation; context matters, and as many other sociologists have noticed, welfare is an important part of that. What I believe is important to underline, is that different types of welfare may have different effects on indebtedness. I will use the “welfare regime theory” to explain why, in certain context, debt may have a substitute effect and in others contexts a complementary effect. The macro transformation of the production paradigm plays a crucial role too, and the rise of jobs in the service sector plays an important role on income dynamics as well."
Magazine articles
- Coûts et taxes: Les défis de l’Université
published in Indisciplinarités #1 (Spring 2010)
- Kosten und Gebühren: Die Herausforderungen der Universität
published in Denkzettel #1 (Spring 2010)
- École pour touTEs: Qui Paye les frais?
(with Lilith Bernasconi) published in Indisciplinarités #2 (Summer 2010)