Nefratiri Weeks

Sociology Internship Coordinator and Instructor

About

  • Find Me On:

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  • Office Hours:

    Wednesdays 11:00 am - 2:00 pm
  • Role:

    Student
  • Position:

    • Sociology Internship Coordinator and Instructor
    • Research Assistant
  • Concentration:

    • Political Economy
    • Inequality
    • Economic, Political, and Social Crises
  • Department:

    • Sociology
  • Education:

    • MA Sociology
  • Curriculum Vitae:

Biography

I am currently pursuing a PhD in sociology with a concentration in political economy. My main research questions center on the social, environmental, and economic impacts of (neo)liberal economic processes as they intersect with capitalism as an unequal globalizing economic, political, and cultural system.

In the spring of 2018, I was awarded the Ingrid H. Rima Scholarship from the Association for Social Economics (ASE) for my paper titled: "Using Polanyi’s The Great Transformation to Understand Crises: Beyond the Regulation School and Social Structures of Accumulation Perspectives". The paper constructs a theoretical framework to approach the crises inherent in the liberalization and deregulation of the economy using Polanyi's concepts of fictitious commodities, asserting that the deregulation of land, labor, and money leads to crises in the corresponding domains of the environment, rising inequality and concentration of wealth, and financialization.

I work as a research assistant with the Center for Fair & Alternative Trade (CFAT) where, for my master's work, I studied the intersection of certification regimes and ethical finance and credit in smallholder agriculture in peripheral nations. We recently relaunched the new and improved Fair Trade Institute website, the world's leading resource for research on fair trade.

Publications

Master's Thesis:
The Fairtrade Access Fund: Does Linking Ethical Investment with Fairtrade Certification Enhance Credit Outcomes for Small Farmers?

Abstract:
The Fairtrade Access Fund is a new ethical investment fund established to work with smallholder farmer cooperatives certified or becoming certified by Fairtrade International. How does the Fairtrade Access Fund fit in with current financing schemes in the developing world? Does the Fairtrade Access Fund's connection with Fairtrade International certification and ethical finance standards enhance the important positive aspects of credit access for smallholder farmers? Does the connection with Fairtrade Standards mitigate the potential risks inherent in debt finance? My study employs an economic sociology and political economy theoretical framework. It traces the certification requirements of Fairtrade International and analyzes how they intersect with the key institutions of ethical finance in order to answer the main research questions. The research includes information on both investors and recipients of the Fairtrade Access Fund and evaluates whether the fund differs from current forms of finance already available to some smallholder farmers. In sum, my findings indicate that linking ethical finance with Fairtrade certification schemes does enhance credit outcomes for smallholder farmers. Further, Fairtrade certification works as an important mechanism of risk management for ethical lending institutions. [ProQuest Link]

Book Chapter:

Raynolds, L and N. Weeks. Forthcoming. “Fairtrade Certification in Latin America: Challenges and Prospects for Fostering Development.” Routledge Handbook of Latin American Development

https://www.routledge.com/The-Routledge-Handbook-of-Latin-American-Development/Cupples-Palomina-Schalscha-Prieto/p/book/9781138060739

Book Review:

Bendeck S., Greenwood I. D., Kadyan S., Tuttle R., Weeks N., Unnithan N. P. In the Trenches: Teaching and Learning Sociology, by M. P Atkinson and K. S. Lowney. New York. W. W Norton, 2016.

In Progress:

“Using Polanyi’s The Great Transformation to Understand Crises: Beyond the Regulation School and Social Structures of Accumulation Perspectives”

Courses

  • SOC 487 and SOC 492

    Syllabus

    Internship and Internship Seminar