Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs

Andrew Schrank and Josh Whitford ─ When Networks Fail

Thursday, April 23, 2015

4:30 p.m.

McKinney Conference Room

Andrew Schrank received his PhD from the University of Wisconsin in 2000 and is currently the Olive Watson Professor of Sociology and International Studies at Brown University. He has previously held positions in political science and sociology at the University of New Mexico, Yale University, and the University of Miami.

He has received grants and fellowships from the Ford Foundation, MacArthur Foundation, Russell Sage Foundation, National Science Foundation, and Social Science Research Council; served as a consulting editor or board member at the American Journal of Sociology, Politics and Society, and Latin American Politics and Society; and consulted for the World Bank, Inter-American Development Bank, United States Department of Labor, and various United Nations agencies.

Josh Whitford is associate professor of sociology at Columbia University. His interests include economic and organizational sociology, comparative political economy, economic geography and pragmatist social theory. His research focuses on the social, political and institutional implications of productive decentralization (outsourcing) in manufacturing industries in both the United States and Europe. He is especially interested in the causes and consequences of, but also fixes for, a series of “network failures” that he has shown to be endemic to decentralized production regimes. Whitford joined the Columbia Sociology faculty as an assistant professor in 2004 and is also a faculty affiliate at the Center on Organizational Innovation. In February 2007, he was named an Industry Studies Fellow by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Whitford is the author of The New Old Economy: Networks, Institutions and the Organizational Transformation of American Manufacturing (Oxford University Press 2005) and has written numerous articles. He is currently working on three main projects: an NSF-sponsored project researching government responses to network failures in American manufacturing industries (with Andrew Schrank); When Networks Fail, a book on the general theory of the network failure (Princeton University Press; with Andrew Schrank); and Icons on the Edge, a book on the prospects for, and implications of, Fiat Auto’s merger with Chrysler (University of Chicago Press; with Francesco Zirpoli and Markus Becker).

Watson Political Economy Forum

The Watson Political Economy Forum (PEF) is a place where Brown scholars, Watson visitors, post-docs and graduate students can meet to discuss and share research on the political economy of the advanced industrial states.