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Monday, May 14, 2007

Cornell/LSE Conference on Property

Cornell Law School and the London School of Economics' Law Department are sponsoring a conference on Techniques of Ownership: Artifacts, Inscriptions, Practices.  The conference is being organized by Greg Alexander (Cornell) and Alain Pottage (LSE), and will be held July 20th & 21st 2007 at the LSE.  Here's the description:

This interdisciplinary conference brings together a range of perspectives for reflection on the question of ownership. The conference theme – techniques of ownership – is designed to focus attention on those social or institutional practices that are taken for granted in many analyses of ownership. Often, theoretical approaches simply accommodate the analysis ownership to models of society and social action that are known in advance of enquiry into the effects of ownership. Many theories of ownership seek only to rationalize existing institutions, practices, and concepts, or to develop normative theories about the most appropriate regime of ownership, based on some foundational value, such as fairness, economic efficiency, or human flourishing. The objective of this meeting is to encourage explorations of the diverse kinds of sociality in which ownership might be involved and which might in some sense be seen as contingent products of ownership. Precisely because it is more suggestive than prescriptive, the theme of ‘technique’ serves as a vehicle for articulating a variety of critical perspectives. The papers canvass sites and contexts such as queues and kibbutzim, artifacts such as passports, patent specifications, and territorial facts; instrumentalities such as the pledge, the biotechnological contract, or modes of inscription, and institutional constructs such as quasi-owners, responsive governors, and excluded subjects.

The following papers will be presented at the conference:

Greg Alexander, Toward a social obligation norm in private property regimes
Hanoch Dagan, Re-imagining takings law
Joe Singer, Property norms: reflections on the externalities of ownership
Laura Underkuffler, Property as constitutional myth: utilities and dangers
Rosemary Coombe, Community subjects and governmentality's limits: revisiting possession
Mariana Valverde, Becoming a stakeholder in the urban moral economy: ownership claims beyond the economic
André Van der Walt, Property and marginality
Kevin Gray, The legal order of the queue
Thomas Scheffer, Owning, not owning, and borrowing an ID card
Kara Swanson, The bureaucracy of genius:  the role of the clerk in the American patent system
Avital Margalit, The modified kibbutz: from communal relations to property rights
Eduardo Peñalver, The problem with land
Nomi Stolzenberg, Facts on the ground
Mario Biagioli, Originality, novelty, and their inscriptions
Annelise Riles, Collateral relations: Property rights in the near future
Alain Pottage, Representation and invention: animate and inanimate embodiments

Ben Barros

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