CURA Events 2020/21

CURA Events and Seminar Schedule 2020/21

CURA Meeting on 25th November 2020 9.30-11.30 MS Teams Link – CURA Meeting

CURA Latin America Network Event: Dr. Adam Fishwick, Dr. Mike Geddes and Dr. Valeria Guarneros-Meza will present an opening to the session based on the special issue’s main introduction alongside other articles included in the special issue (30 minutes). An open discussion will follow inviting comments by the rest of the group. We are interested in inviting debates that cut across Latin American and European experiences around the following topics:

•Drawing the boundaries between co-optation and autonomy  

•The weaknesses and strengths of party-movements, activists-bureaucrats  

•Anti-racism, post-coloniality and/or feminism in the development of institutions  

•But other topics/angles also welcome 

The session will take place on Thursday 12 November, 1-3:30pm (GMT). Below the link to the Teams meeting. MS Teams Link – CURA Latin America Network Event 

 CURA Latin America Network Event: Dr. Adam Fishwick and Dr Lucila D’Urso (University of Buenos Aires) will be presenting Trade unions under austerity: labour activism in the post-2015 automobile sector in Argentina. Wednesday 25th November 2020 15.00-16.00. MS Teams Link – CURA Latin America Network Event

Trade unions under austerity: labour activism in the post-2015 automobile sector in Argentina

Since 2015, with the electoral victory of Mauricio Macri, Argentina has experienced deep cuts in social spending, and attempts to impose a regressive – and deeply unpopular – labour reform. Wages have stagnated as inflation has skyrocketed and the private sector – particularly domestic industrial production – has entered a deep and sustained period of crisis. In this paper, we examine how these effects of austerity in Argentina have impacted the capacity of labour activists to organise and mobilise against these changes. Drawing on data from semi-structured interviews with trade union officials, union members and dissident current and former union activists, the paper assesses recent experiences of labour organising in the automotive sector. Workers in this sector are represented by powerful, well-organised trade unions (SMATA and UOM), which regained substantial political influence during the prior period of union ‘revitalisation’ and rapid state-supported growth, securing wage growth but worsening working conditions (Santella 2015). In recent years, however, collapsing domestic and international demand has seen production fall dramatically, with plant suspensions and closures increasingly becoming the norm. Thus, the paper analyses the extent to which the ‘creativity’ of capitalism – exemplified by these combined crises – has been matched by the creativity of workers to contest and confront its deleterious effects (see Flesher Fominaya & Cox 2013; Fishwick and Connolly 2018; Nowak et al. 2018). In what ways have the changes to “labour and life” (Lazar 2017) stymied or revitalised organisation and mobilisation? How far can the existing organisational structures of the trade unions respond to these new conditions? And to what extent can union activists drive new dynamics of organising and demands that exceed the bounds of the workplace?

Internal Guest Seminar Series: Miriam Ureta and Stefan Treffers panel presenting their PhD topics TBC. Wednesday 9th December 2020 14.00-15.30.

Internal Guest Seminar Series: Dr. Adrian Bua presenting The role of relational governing resources in regime stability and change: a working hypothesis from an exploratory study of left municipalism in Galicia. Wednesday 20th January 2021 14.00-15.00 MS Teams Link – Seminar Series 20th January 

This presentation, in collaboration with Professor Jonathan Davies, reports on ongoing research into left municipalist administrations in Galicia from 2015-19. These administrations took over from well-established local urban regimes consolidated under (relatively uninterrupted) Socialist Party rule since the first democratic municipal elections in 1978, on anti-austerity, anti-corruption and pro-social justice messages. In this paper we contribute to explaining the limitations and retreats experienced by these platforms, marked by widespread electoral defeat in 2019. Influenced by urban regime theory, we suggest that governing resources based on formal and informal relationships between local regime actors (politicians, public officials and private enterprise and civil society representatives) are an important facilitator of governability. Based on preliminary research, we present the working hypothesis that governance failures are in part explained by a “governance resource strike” on behalf of actors linked to the former regime, exacerbating the administrative weakness of activists-turned politicians, as well as the municipalist coalition incapacity to generate independent relational resources across the state, the private sector and civil society with a comparable capacity for collective action to those of the previous regime.

External Guest Seminar Series: Piero Corcillo presenting Social Mixing and the London East Village” Exclusion, Habitus and Belonging in a Post-Olympics Neighbourhood Wednesday 17th February 2021 14.00-15.30. MS Teams Link – Guest Seminar 17th February

CURA Annual Lecture: Dr Ana Cecilia Dinerstein presenting Decolonising critique: for a global politics of hope. Monday 8th March 2021 16.00-17.00. MS Teams Link – Annual Lecture 8th March

External Guest Seminar Series: Jaime Palomera presenting The regulation of mortgage and housing markets, class formation, urban fragmentation, and the commodification of everyday life. March 2021 TBC.

Internal Guest Seminar Series: Sally Ward presenting PhD thesis The preconditions of community self-organisation. A comparative case study in England. 21st Wednesday April 2021 14.00-15.00. MS Teams Link – Seminar Series 21st April

Internal Guest Seminar Series: Professor Jonathan Davies presenting Between Realism and Revolt: Governing Cities in the Crisis of Neoliberal Globalis. Wednesday 16th June 2021 14.00-15.00pm. MS Teams Link – Seminar Series 16th June

CURA Summer School July 2021 TBC.

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