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SESSION 09. Global Cultures of Risk: Insurance in Non-Western Contexts (1870–1980)

9. Global Cultures of Risk: Insurance in Non-Western Contexts (1870–1980).

Martin Lengwiler (University of Basel). martin.lengwiler@unibas.ch
Robin Pearson (Hull University Business School).

ABSTRACT

The session contributes to the growing body of research into the institutional and cultural conditions of globalisation. Taking insurance as a representative branch of the tertiary sector, it analyses the expansion of the service sector into non-Western markets. The period investigated stretches from the 1870s to the 1970s. Geographically, the project focuses on three regions: the Middle East (with a focus on Turkey in the late Ottoman period and the early Republic), Asia (South, South-East, and East Asia, focusing on India, China and the Philippines), and sub-Saharan Africa (with a focus on Nigeria, Cameroon, and the activities of international organisations in the region). The session highlights the concept of cultures of risk as an analytic tool for understanding the institutional and cultural conditions of non-Western approaches to risk. How did Western and non-Western insurance companies deal with the cultural contexts of non-Western regions and markets? How did they sell their intangible services in foreign markets?

 

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