Original Articles

The Human Economy Project: first steps

Published in: Anthropology Southern Africa
Volume 36, issue 3-4, 2013, pages: 99–101
DOI: 10.1080/02580144.2013.10887032
Author(s): John SharpThe Human Economy Project, Faculty of Humanities, South Africa, Theodore PowersThe Human Economy Project, Faculty of Humanities, South Africa, Vito LaterzaThe Human Economy Project, Faculty of Humanities, South Africa

Abstract

The Human Economy Project is interdisciplinary in scope, but relies extensively on anthropological research methods. These methods are an appropriate counter to the methods adopted in mainstream economics, which has been criticised for its isolation from ‘the ordinary business of life’. Four essays in this collection illustrate the use of the ethnographic research method in posing questions about the way in which people in different parts of the world perceive the ‘big institutions’—the market, the state, business corporations—that impinge on their lives. The final two essays discuss the rationale behind the Human Economy Project and the meaning of the ‘human economy’ idea.

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