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Governmentality: Genealogical Analysis of Modern Logics of Government

Case
By: Published: 2019 | Product: SAGE Research Methods Cases in Business and Management
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Abstract

With the dawn of the 21st century, catastrophic crises such as the 2007–2008 Financial Crisis, the 2010 BP Oil Spill, and the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster produced social, economic, and environmental effects that reverberated across the globe as people lost life savings and the eco-systems upon which their livelihoods depended. I sought to understand why government and industry crises managers failed to address underlying conditions giving rise to each crisis, particularly because risks had been well mapped by experts prior to each disaster. Accordingly, I adopted governmentality as a framework for mapping how specific strategies, technologies, and communications make crises inevitable, despite considerable expert forewarnings. Governmentality bridges micro and macro analyses, linking everyday practices and operations to social “logics of conduct” shaping institutions and circulating across global society. Governmentality allowed me to analyze, compare, and contrast each crisis, looking for similarities and differences in codes of conduct across disasters.

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