Econ-SF reading group: let's choose the first title

As a way to start moving towards the Economics Science Fiction seminar, we have decided to start a reading group. This will allow the seminar’s core group to build a shared reading list, a platform to stand on as we try to tease out fictional economic systems. It’s also in line with the Research Network’s scaling, as we are exploring interesting ways to think together at the limit.

Now is the time to choose our first title and a date for the first reading group! I’ve updated the wiki to include the various additional books suggested throughout the comment thread. Please feel free to add more info or links.

Pinging all those that have shown interest and of course any others hiding behind the wings @alberto @alex_levene @jolwalton @sz_duras @joelfinkle @Kaibeezy @LStewart @anonandon @OmaMorkie @Enro @ralmond @rachel @mariacoenen @ireinga


  • share your approval of any book you’d be willing to start with for the reading group by completing the poll below. We are using approval voting to better map out the area of convergence across the different people.
  • select the dates that would suit you best for it to be held by completing the second poll below.

I’ve opted for mid to end July so there’s time to read, and for 18:00 - 20:00 (CEST) as in my experience these times seem to work best across various lifestyles. Remember we will be video calling people in, so you don’t need to be in Brussels.

We’ll finalise the first book and date by this Saturday 23 June.

Book title choice poll

    • Walkaway, by Cory Doctorow
    • Distraction, by Bruce Sterling
    • Makers, by Cory Doctorow
    • Autonomous, by Annalee Newitz
    • Freedom TM, by Daniel Suarez
    • Webs of Varok, by Cary Neeper
    • Economic Science Fictions, Edited by William Davies
    • Memoirs of a Spacewoman, by Naomi Mitchinson
    • The Final Circle of Paradise, by Strugatski Brothers
    • Shockwave Rider, by John Brunner
    • The Year 200, by Augustin de Roja
    • Michaelmas, by Algis Budrys
    • The Syndic, by C.M.Kornbluth
    • The Space Merchants, by Pohl and Kornbluth
    • Down and Out in the Magic Kindgom, by Cory Doctorow.
    • Neptunes Brood, by Charles Stross
    • Subspace Explorers, by E. E. Smith
    • Ring of Fire, by Eric Flint
    • Centenal Cycle series, by Malka Olders
    • Book 1: Infomocracy
    • Book 2: Null States
    • Book 3: State Tectonics
    • New York 2140, by Kim Stanley Robinson
    • Red Plenty, (short stories), by Francis Spufford
    • Capitalist Sorcery, by Phillip Pignarre and Isabelle Stengers
    • The Power at the End of the Economy, by Brian Massumi
    • Speculate This! by uncertain commons
    • Cybernetic Revolutionaries, by Eden Medina
0 voters

Dates choice

  • Monday 16 July, 18:00
  • Tuesday 17 July, 18:00
  • Wednesday 18 July, 18:00
  • Thursday 19 July, 18:00
  • Saturday 20 July, 14:00
  • Monday 23 July, 18:00
  • Tuesday 24 July, 18:00
  • Wednesday 25 July, 18:00
  • Thursday 26 July, 18:00
  • Saturday 28 July, 14:00
  • Monday 30 July, 18:00
  • Tuesday 31 July, 18:00
0 voters

Hey @anique and all! I just found this group, and since I wanted to explore eco-sf for a long time myself, I’d be happy to join!


Welcome then @coloursinside. We’ll explore together.

Super and welcome @coloursinside :airplane:

I love this thanks for compiling the list.

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And so we have it! The first Econ Sci Fi and Research Network reading group will be of …

Walkaway by Cory Doctorow

Thursday 26 July, 18:00 CEST
The Reef, Rue Pierre Decoster 75, Forest 1190.
We will create a video link for people wanting to join virtually.

Please comment here to let us know if you’ll be making it so we can be prepared to welcome you.

As Walkaway and Autonomous were voted on equal footing, we’ll look to read Autonomous up next, likely in September.

Ping @alberto @alex_levene @jolwalton @sz_duras @joelfinkle @Kaibeezy @LStewart @anonandon @OmaMorkie @Enro @ralmond @rachel @mariacoenen @ireinga @amiridina @coloursinside @noemi


Brilliant. Looking forward to it already.

Me too! I’ll see if I can put together a list of econ-heavy bookmarks.

Having only just finished reading this book whilst travelling i’m going to look around to see if there’s any interesting critical theory responses to the text.
My number one takeaway from the book so far was how much i wished there was an onsen in my life!


We should make one in the future Reef…


Mind if I join? I usually read sci-fi when I’m supposed to be reading econ, so this seems like a good solution.


Would be great to have you @Brian_Econ! Will you be VoIP-ing in from elsewhere or are you based in Brussels?

Many thanks, and very much VoIP. I’ll be in Los Angeles.

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Super, @Brian_Econ. We need more economists for a balanced discussion.

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Does someone know if the audiobook is available somewhere for free? As far as I know Cory Doctorow is hugely into creative commons, but I don’t know if it reaches this far.

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Couldn’t find it either… but oh my, Will Wheaton :-))