The Capital as Power working paper series showcases cutting edge research on the political economy of capitalist power. The series is open to a wide-range of issues: theoretical, empirical, historical or contemporary. The aim is to stimulate debate and discussion on the capital as power framework. If you are interested in submitting a working paper, please email us and put “Working Papers” in the subject line.

No. 2015/04: Bichler and Nitzan, “The CasP Project: Past, Present, Future”

December 22, 2015

Working Paper No. 2015/04 Shimson Bichler and Jonathan Nitzan, “The CasP Project: Past, Present, Future” The study of capital as power (CasP) began when we were students in the 1980s and has since expanded into a broader project involving a growing number of researchers and new areas of inquiry. This paper provides a bird’s-eye view … Read more

No. 2015/03: Bichler and Nitzan, “Capital Accumulation: Fiction and Reality”

June 11, 2015

Working Paper No. 2015/03 Shimshon Bichler and Jonathan Nitzan, “Capital Accumulation: Fiction and Reality” What do economists mean when they talk about ‘capital accumulation’? Surprisingly, the answer to this question is anything but clear, and it seems the most unclear in times of turmoil. Consider the recent ‘financial crisis’. The very term already attests to … Read more

No. 2015/02: McMahon, "Marxism, Culture and the Measurement of Value"

March 6, 2015

Working Paper No. 2015/02 James McMahon, “Marxism, Culture and the Measurement of Value” Various studies of mass culture use the Marxist labour theory of value to conceptualize how capital is being accumulated from cultural production and its broader social and immaterial dimensions. However, there is a significant methodological problem that lingers. The issue stems from … Read more

No. 2015/01: Hager, "Public Debt as Corporate Power"

January 6, 2015

Working Paper No. 2015/01 Sandy Brian Hager, “Public Debt as Corporate Power” In various writings Karl Marx made references to an ‘aristocracy of finance’ in Western Europe and the United States that dominated ownership of the public debt. Drawing on original research, this paper offers the first comprehensive analysis of the pattern of public debt … Read more

No. 2014/05: Fix, "Putting Power Back Into Growth Theory" (Winner of the 2014 RECASP Essay Prize)

January 6, 2015

Working Paper No. 2014/05 Blair Fix, “Putting Power Back Into Growth Theory” * Winner of the 2014 RECASP Essay Prize * Neoclassical growth theory assumes that economic growth is an atomistic process in which changes in distribution play no role. Unfortunately, when this assumption is tested against real-world evidence, it is systematically violated. This paper … Read more

No. 2014/04: Bichler and Nitzan, "Still About Oil?"

November 27, 2014

Working Paper No. 2014/04 Shimshon Bichler and Jonathan Nitzan, “Still About Oil?” During the late 1980s and early 1990s, we identified a new Middle East phenomenon that we called ‘energy conflicts’ and argued that these conflicts were intimately linked with the global processes of capital accumulation. This paper outlines the theoretical framework we have developed over the years … Read more

No. 2014/03: Baines, "The Ethanol Boom and the Restructuring of the Food Regime"

July 16, 2014

Working Paper No. 2014/03 Joseph Baines, “The Ethanol Boom and the Restructuring of the Food Regime” [A shorter version of this paper is forthcoming at The Journal of Peasant Studies] The agrofuel boom has brought about some of the most significant transformations in the world food system in recent decades. A rich and diverse body … Read more

No. 2014/02: Fix, "Rethinking Profit: How Redistribution Drives Growth"

April 7, 2014

Working Paper No. 2014/02 Blair Fix, “Rethinking Profit: How Redistribution Drives Growth” Using a combination of heterodox economics and biophysical analysis, this paper investigates the relationship between economic distribution and the growth of material throughput. Empirical results show that the growth of “useful work” correlates with redistribution towards pro fit. Furthermore, increases in energy consumption are correlated … Read more