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Dr Neeta Shah, University of Westminster

Wed, 28 October 2020, 12:30 to 14:00

MS Teams - link to be emailed to those who register

Dr Neeta Shah, Senior Lecturer in Finance and Accounting in the School of Finance and Accounting at the University of Westminster will be presenting: ‘Twice migrated Gujarati women: financialization and pensions'.


Dr Shah has taught a variety of courses in areas of Financial Accounting, Corporate Finance, Management Accounting, Financial Management and Corporate Governance. Her qualifications include a Phd from the School of Management Royal Holloway University of London, an MBA from the University of Warwick and Fellow of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). Her research interests are in the areas of Accounting History, Corporate Finance, Corporate Governance, Financialisation, Pensions and International Accounting Standards.


This project explores the social dimensions of financialization, focusing on the scope for agency and barriers to this of twice migrant (Striking Women, 2018) Kenyan Asian Gujarati households of west London. We focus on the lived experience of later life financial (in)security, justified on the basis that

‘Although in recent years a great deal of attention has been given to pensions and retirement planning in the media and public policy discourse, relatively little has been given to how these issues relate to ethnic minorities’ (Gough and Hick, 2009). 

Further, long-term savings levels have been persistently low particularly for Asian women, for whom financial disadvantages persist in retirement (Gough and Adami, 2013) 

Both the above studies however are relatively broad-brush including Indians as one generic group. Our contribution instead is to draw critically on ethnographic and world history approaches (Hart and Ortiz, 2014), so as to undertake a fine-grained and transnationally informed (Boccagni, 2017) analysis of how culture interacts with a sense of financial agency. One of the researchers is a female member of the west London Gujarati community, so offering possibilities for autoethnography, the systematic involvement of the researcher’s biography into the research process (Becker, 2014; Ellis, Adams and Bochner, 2011).

Whilst financialization of the non-financial corporation has been widely studied, (e.g. see Gleadle and Cornelius, 2008; Andersson, Gleadle, Haslam and Tsitsianis, 2010; Gleadle, Parris, Shipman and Simonetti, 2014), Martin (2002) explores financialization at the level of the individual’s personal finances. We, however, extend Martin (2002) with our study of global networks at the community level in our particular ethnography of finance (Hart and Ortiz, 2014).

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Andersson, T, Gleadle, P, Haslam, C and Tsitsianis, N (2010), ‘Bio-pharma: A financialized business model’, (with T Andersson, C Haslam & N), (2010), Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 21, 7, 631-641.

Becker, S (2014), ‘How can autoethnography help to understand researcher positionality?’ Paper given at the Sociolinguistics Symposium 20: Language, Time, Space, Session: Bi/multilingualism: The dynamics of researcher positionality in multilingual settings-potentials and challenges, University of Jyvaskyla, Finland, 16th June, 2014.  
Boccagni, P (2017), ‘Transnationalism,’ in Turner, BS (ed.), ‘The Wiley Blackwell Encyclopedia of Social Theory,’ London, UK; John Wiley & Sons Ltd.
Burton, D. (1996). Ethnicity and consumer financial behaviour: a case study of British Asians in the pensions market. The international journal of bank marketing., 14(7), 21-31.
Ellis, C, Adams, TE and Bochner, AP (2011), ‘Autoethnography: an overview,’ Forum: qualitative research/Sozialforschung,’ 12, 1, 10, January 2011.
Gleadle, P and Cornelius, N (2008), ‘A case study of financialization and EVA©,’ Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 19, 8, 1219-1238.
Gleadle, P, Parris, S, Shipman, A and Simonetti, R (2014), ‘Restructuring and innovation in pharmaceuticals and biotechs: the impact of financialisation,’ Critical Perspectives on Accounting, 25, 1, 67-77.
Gough, O and Hick, R (2009), ‘Ethnic minorities, retirement planning and Personal Accounts,’ International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, 29, 9/10, pp.488-497.
Gough, O. and Adami, R. (2013), ‘Saving for Retirement: a Review of Ethnic Minorities in the UK’, Social Policy and Society, 12, 1, pp. 147-161
Hart, K and Ortiz, H (2014), ‘The anthropology of money and finance: between ethnography and world history,’ Annual Review of Ethnography, 43, 165-82.
Martin, R (2002), ‘Financialization of daily life,’ Philadelphia, USA: Temple University Press.
Striking Women (2018), ‘Twice migrants: African Asian migration to the UK,’ Accessed 31st January 2018.

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Contact us

To find out more about our work, or to discuss a potential project, please contact:

International Development Research Office
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
The Open University
Walton Hall
Milton Keynes
United Kingdom

T: +44 (0)1908 858502