27 september: lecture by Professor Benjamin Selwyn

Special Guest Public Lecture

Professor Benjamin Selwyn

University of Sussex, School of Global Studies

21st Century Global Capitalism:

For or Against Global Labour?

27th September 2018 at 18:15 pm

University of Geneva, Uni-Mail, room 2193


This conference takes place in the program of the seminar "Theoretical and Practical Workshop in Socioeconomics" of the Master in Socioeconomics of the University of Geneva and is open to the public.

Conference Abstract

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) generates a picture of a world which is experiencing the benefits of capitalist development. SDG goal no.1 – the ending of poverty in all its forms everywhere by 2030 – is widely proclaimed to be realisable. Global Capitalism is an incredibly powerful wealth-generating system, which feeds such optimism. However, capitalism’s exploitative social relations mean that its dynamism will only every benefit a minority, while its costs will be borne by the majority. The goal of this lecture is to discuss this apparent paradox between the optimistic SDG development discourse and the empirical negative effect of development policies. It provides a critical commentary on popular thinking about global development by outlining a) the unsoundness of the World Bank’s poverty measurement methodology; b) the processes that have generating a highly exploited and largely poor global labouring class, and c) the anti-labour sentiments at the core of mainstream theories of development. It concludes by arguing that genuinely progressive development thinking and practice should root itself in notions of labouring class solidarity, collective action, and struggles against exploitation.

For any further information: aris.martinelli(at)

5 juin 2017