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The Worth of Goods – Valuation and Pricing in the Economy - Oxford Scholarship Online
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The Worth of Goods: Valuation and Pricing in the Economy

Jens Beckert and Patrik Aspers


How do we place value on goods — and, importantly, why? Valuation and pricing are core issues in the market economy, but understanding of these concepts and their interrelation is weak. In response, this book takes a sociological approach to the perennial but timely question of what makes a product valuable. Structured in three parts, it first examines value in the broader sense — moral values and how they are formed, and the relations between economic and non-economic values — discussing such matters as the value of an oil spill, the price of a scientific paper, value in ethical consumption, ... More

Keywords: goods, valuation, pricing, market economy, moral values, economic values, non-economic values, imaginative value

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2011 Print ISBN-13: 9780199594641
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2015 DOI:10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199594641.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Jens Beckert, editor
Director, Max Planck Institute for the Study of Societies, Cologne

Patrik Aspers, editor
Professor, Department of Sociology, Stockholm University and Swedish School of Textiles

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1 Value in Markets*

Patrik Aspers and Jens Beckert

Part I What is Valuable?

2 Price and Prejudice

Marion Fourcade*

4 The Value of Ethics

Peter Gourevitch*

Part II Aesthetic Markets

7 Pricing Looks

Ashley Mears

9 Infinite Surprises

Michael Hutter

Part III Financial Markets

10 Forecasting as Valuation

Akos Rona-Tas and Stefanie Hiss*

Part IV Organizations

13 Valuing Products as Cultural Symbols

Davide Ravasi, Violina Rindova, and Ileana Stigliani


14 What’s Valuable?

David Stark*

End Matter