Date and Time
13th Feb 2014 11:00 –– 14th Feb 2014 17:00
University of Edinburgh, The Business School, 29 Buccleuch Place

The Scottish Graduate School of Social Science welcomes postgraduate research students to the following advanced training event:


Event description 

How can an insurance claim for a damaged knee be resolved into a sum of compensation? What is the fair price of polluting the environment? On what grounds can a new therapeutic technique be allowed introduction into the health care system? Did the right singer win the talent show? The workshop focuses on valuation as a social practice. The determination and comparison of values, be they price, quantifications of quality, or ethics, affect almost all parts of life, including restaurants (Blank 2007), films, music (Karpik 2010); the performance of hospitals, schools (Wedlin 2006) and universities (Free et al. 2009). The quantification and materialization of values is of central importance to understanding accountability, evidence, and decision-making. In practice, these quantified values are made beside other types of less quantifiable values such as the value of life, medical assessments in practice, assessment of quality (of life? Of care? Of learning?). Commensurations, conflicts, and coordination of different values and performances of value are always already made in organizations ranging from public administration, commercial enterprises to academic institutions (Cf. Zuiderent-Jerak, forthcoming; Roscoe, forthcoming). However, the contemporary explosion in the availability of digital data, and the proliferation of means through which measurements come to represent distinct values, including the technologies of comparison and calculation are changing valuation practice. A number of academic traditions have come together to explore the development of practices and processes of valuation including Science and Technology Studies, Critical Accounting Studies and the Sociology of Finance. 

An international research symposium and doctoral training workshop and masterclass will be held in the University of Edinburgh on 13th and 14th February 2014. These events are jointly organised by The University of Edinburgh, Institute for the Study of Science, Technology and Innovation ( and the Linköping University, Department of Thematic Studies: Technology and Social Change [Valuation studies (ValueS) programme] ( and supported by the Scottish Graduate School of Social Science ( 

Registration will start at 11am Thursday 13th Feb, and activities will start with a public lecture by Professor Wendy Espeland, Northwestern University at 12.00 (noon). 

Presentations are invited that may touch on a number of themes:
  • calculative technologies, including automated forms of valuation
  • how is commensurability established
  • deconstructing calculations and evaluations (and more recently constructing alternatives ones).
  • the mediating role of valuation/accounting
Valuation Studies is an emerging field of research that places emphasis on the means and processes of achieving values, as well as their comparison and use. The study of value and valuation ties in with the study of the mitigation of multiple regimes of value, and the establishment of commensurable values. The perspective also opens for the deconstruction of the socio-technical means of calculation and mediation. In this valuation studies connects to the field of science & technology studies and critical accounting. Following the construction of economic accounts, and the technologies of evaluation is an important way to gain a full picture of valuation that ties in with economics.

The event is occasioned by an international exchange visit by scholars from the University of Linkoping Valuation Studies (ValueS programme which has been running since 2010 and involves 10 researchers and PhD students. They host a newly established open access journal Valuation Studies (

For more information contact Prof Robin Williams (

Programme Committee Gian Marco Campagnolo, Wendy Espeland, Claes-Fredrik Helgesson, Anne Kerr, Anna Küller, Donald MacKenzie, James Mittra, Johan Nilsson, Neil Pollock, Paolo Quattrone, Karin Thoresson, Andrew Webster, Robin Williams


To book a place, please go to the Eventbrite booking page. Limited places. 

Last updated 21 Jan 2014 10:23am