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Fred Block


  • Ph.D., University of California, Berkeley


Curriculum Vitae

Research Interests

  • Economic and Political Sociology
  • Sociological Theory
  • Sociology of Welfare

Current Research Projects

The Hidden Developmental State in the United States
Funded by the Ford Foundation

For the last seven years, I have been researching the activities of the U.S. government in support of the commercialization of new technologies. In a series of papers, I have documented that these efforts are far more widespread and more successful than most analysts have recognized. The programs are “hidden” because they are rarely discussed by journalists or academics, they run counter to the prevailing “free market” ideas, and they operate in a decentralized fashion that makes it difficult to track their impact. With a group of collaborators, I have published an edited book on these programs.  It is called State of Innovation: The U.S. Government's Role in Technology Development, edited with Matthew R. Keller, and published by Paradigm Publishers.



  • Block, Fred amd Margaret Somers. 2014.  The Power of Market Fundamentalism: Karl Polanyi's Critique. Harvard University Press.
  • Block, Fred. 2014.  "Democratizing Finance."  Politics & Society, March.
  • Block, Fred.  2013.  "Explaining the Transformation in the U.S. Innovation System: The Impact of a Small Government Program."  (with Matthew R. Keller), Socio-Economic Review.
  • Block, Fred.  2012.  "Varieties of What?  Should We Still be Using the Concept of Capitalism."  Political Power and Social Theory, vol. 23.
  • Block, Fred. 2011.  "Reinventing Social Democracy for the 21st Century,"  Journal of Australian Political Economy.
  • Block, Fred.  2010.  "Crisis and Renewal: The Outlines of a 21st Century New Deal,"  Socio-Economic Review.
  • Block, Fred. 2008. "Swimming Against the Current: The Rise of a Hidden Developmental State in the United States," Politics & Society.