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Polanyi Levitt, Kari
Polanyi Levitt, Kari

Kari Polanyi Levitt is Emerita Professor of Econo­mics at McGill Univer­sity. Born in Vienna, educated in England, she obtained a BSc (Econ) from the London School of Econo­mics with First Class Honours and the Farr Medal in Statis­tics in 1947. Follo­wing ten years of enga­ge­ment in trade union rese­arch and publi­ca­tion in Toronto, she returned to univer­sity and obtained an MA from the Univer­sity of Toronto in 1959 and an appoint­ment in the Depart­ment of Econo­mics at McGill Univer­sity in 1961. She taught a variety of courses, but her special inte­rests were Tech­ni­ques of Deve­lop­ment Plan­ning and Deve­lop­ment Econo­mics.

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Her major rese­arch was in the construc­tion of inpu­t-output tables of the Atlantic provinces of Canada published by Statis­tics Canada in 1975. Concur­rently she studied the effects of Foreign Direct Invest­ment on host coun­tries published as Silent Surrender: The Multi­na­tional Corpo­ra­tion in Canada; Macmillan of Canada, 1970, many times reprinted, most recently in 2002 by McGil­l-Queen’s Press; also trans­lated to French, La Capi­tu­la­tion Tran­quille, 1972.

Since her first contact with the Univer­sity of the West Indies (UWI) in 1961 and as a foun­ding member of McGill’s Centre for Deve­lo­ping-Area Studies in 1963, she main­tained a conti­nuous rela­ti­onship with graduate students and faculty of UWI, inclu­ding colla­bo­ra­tion with Alister McIn­tyre in Cana­da-West Indies Economic Rela­tions (1967) and with Lloyd Best in deve­lo­ping the Plan­ta­tion Economy para­digm at McGill from 1966 to 1968 published as Essays on the Theory of Plan­ta­tion Economy: A Histo­rical and Insti­tu­tional Approach to Carib­bean Economic Deve­lop­ment; UWI Press, Jamaica, 2009.

On the basis of her expe­ri­ence in multi-­sec­toral economic accoun­ting, and her fami­li­a­rity with Carib­bean econo­mies, she was appointed as national income advisor on the construc­tion of a system of National Accounts for Trinidad and Tobago (1969 to 1973). She under­took a study for the United Nations Economic Commis­sion on Latin America on bargai­ning with trans­na­tional bauxite/alumi­nium compa­nies (1976); a review of Haiti’s National Accounts for the World Bank (1986); and a review of Cana­da-­Ca­rib­bean rela­tions for the Cana­dian Parli­a­men­tary Sub Committee on Foreign Affairs (Hansard, July 1982).

In 1974 she served as Visiting Professor at the Insti­tute of Inter­na­tional Rela­tions at UWI- St Augus­tine; Visiting Professor at the Depart­ment of Econo­mics, UWI- Mona 1978-1980; taught Theo­ries of Economic Deve­lop­ment at the Consor­tium Graduate School of Social Sciences at UWI- Mona from 1989-1995; appointed the first George Beck­ford Professor of Carib­bean Economy, 1995-1997, where she compiled The George Beck­ford Papers, Canoe Press, Barbados, Jamaica, Trinidad and Tobago, 2000. Public lectures and rese­arch papers published were published as Reclai­ming Deve­lop­ment: Inde­pen­dent Thought and Carib­bean Commu­nity, Ian Randle, Jamaica, 2005.

Professor Levitt is a foun­ding member of the Cana­dian Asso­cia­tion for the Study of Inter­na­tional Deve­lop­ment (CASID), reci­pient of the J. K. Galbraith Prize from the Progres­sive Econo­mics Forum of Canada (2008), and an hono­urary docto­rate from The Univer­sity of the West Indies. Professor Levitt is Hono­urary Presi­dent of the Karl Polanyi Insti­tute of Poli­tical Economy at Concordia Univer­sity, esta­blished in 1987; she edited The Life and Work of Karl Polanyi: A Cele­bra­tion, Black Rose Books, Montreal, 1988; co-e­dited with Kenneth McRobbie, Karl Polanyi in Vienna; Black Rose Books, Montreal, 2000; and manages the literary legacy of her father, Karl Polanyi. She was inducted into the Hunga­rian Academy of Sciences in 2004.

Her early inte­rest in Deve­lop­ment Econo­mics has extended to the History of Deve­lop­ment Thought in the context of the evolu­tion of capi­ta­lism and its impact on the non-­Eu­ro­pean world from the era of Mercan­ti­lism to the present. From the Great Trans­for­ma­tion to the Great Finan­cia­liza­tion: on Karl Polanyi and other essays, Zed Books, 2013, includes a tribute essay to the econo­mist Surendra Patel in the form of a trajec­tory of capi­ta­lism from its origins in mercan­ti­list trade and conquest to neoli­beral globa­liza­tion and the finan­cial crises of 2008.

In 2014, she received the Order of Canada for her work on Carib­bean and other issues of economic deve­lop­ment. In recent years, she has parti­ci­pated in confe­rences on the life and work of Karl Polanyi. Her latest cont­ri­bu­tion addresses Karl Polanyi’s vision of a socia­list Trans­for­ma­tion, in a collec­tion of essays on Karl Polanyi under the same title, published by Black Roses Book, 2018

Deutsch, Lisa
Deutsch, Lisa

Technical University (TU) Darmstadt, Research Associate

Lisa Deutsch is a PhD candi­date and rese­arch asso­ciate at the Tech­nical Univer­sity (TU) Darm­stadt. Born in Vienna, she obtained two Bachelor degrees (Socio­logy and Poli­tical Science) from the Univer­sity of Vienna. During her Bachelor’s she spent two semes­ters at the Univer­sidad Nacional Autónoma de México (UNAM) in Mexico City, where she focused on (neo-)extrac­tivism and natural resource use in Latin America. Subse­quently, she studied Soci­o-E­co­lo­gical Econo­mics and Policy (MSc) at the Vienna Univer­sity of Econo­mics and Busi­ness (WU), comple­ting the programme with a thesis on the gender-en­vi­ron­ment inter­face from a critical realist perspec­tive by conduc­ting a case study in Austria. Her current rese­arch at TU Darm­stadt focuses upon the inter­ac­tion of tech­nical infra­struc­ture systems, urban ecosys­tems and the urban envi­ron­ment in deve­lo­ping coun­tries. Lisa Deutsch is part of the inter­di­sci­pli­nary junior rese­arch group SEE-UR­BAN-WATER, conduc­ting a case study in León, the second largest city of Nica­ragua. Her rese­arch inte­rest is directed towards soci­al-e­co­lo­gical trans­for­ma­tion, poli­tical ecology, the gender-en­vi­ron­ment inter­face, as well as philo­sophy of science and Latin America.  

Master 2017; Super­visor: Prof. Clive L. Spash

Leonhardt, Heidi, MSc.
Leonhardt, Heidi, MSc.

Research Assistant (pre doc) at Boku, Institute for Sustainable Economic Development

Heidi Leon­hardt holds a BSc in Envi­ron­mental Manage­ment from the Univer­sity of Natural Resources and Life Sciences (Boku) Vienna and a MSc in Soci­o-E­co­lo­gical Econo­mics and Policy. She wrote her Master Thesis with Prof. Clive Spash on Degrowth and Non-Gro­wing firms in Austria. After finis­hing her Master's degree in 2015 she returned to Boku's Insti­tute for Sustainable Economic Deve­lop­ment for her PhD studies and as a rese­arch assis­tant (pre doc). At Boku, Heidi rese­ar­ches the beha­viour of Austrian farmers; more speci­fi­cally the influ­ence of insti­tu­tions on farmers' soil use. She focuses on inter­di­sci­pli­nary and mixed method rese­arch, ranging from econo­metric analysis to quali­ta­tive inter­views and Q metho­do­logy. More­over, she is involved in the society for plura­list econo­mics educa­tion in Vienna and teaches econo­mics and history of economic thought in Vienna and Graz, respec­tively. Her rese­arch inte­rests beyond farming include topics on Degrowth and Social Ecolo­gical Econo­mics.

Contact infor­ma­tion and list of publi­ca­tions: https://tinyurl.com/ycc6­ree2

Master 2015; Super­visor: Prof. Clive L. Spash

Smith-Spash, Tone
Smith-Spash, Tone

Smit­h-­Spash, Tone

PhD. 2017. Super­visor: Dr. Andreas Novy

Topic: The role of numbers in envi­ron­mental poli­tics: The Econo­mics of Ecosys­tems and Biodi­ver­sity (TEEB)

Tone Smit­h-­Spash did her Master (M.Phil) in human geography and wrote her thesis on food secu­rity and sustainable food systems. She later engaged in the right to food move­ment, and was the presi­dent for FIAN Norway 1998-2000. Her working expe­ri­ence is mainly from Statis­tics Norway and the OECD where she worked for more than 10 years on sustaina­bi­lity indi­ca­tors, envi­ron­mental perfor­mance assess­ment and envi­ron­mental statis­tics. She has parti­ci­pated in a range of inter­na­tional working groups within orga­ni­sa­tions such as Euro­stat and the UNECE. More recently she returned to academia, where she is about to finish her doctoral project on the role of numbers in envi­ron­mental policy. 

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