labour precarity | gender | politics of well-being | social reproduction
Patrícia Alves de Matos is an economic anthropologist trained in Lisbon and London. She is currently a senior researcher at CRIA with the project "Everyday Worlds of Welfare: a comparative study of human needs, livelihood sustainability and social policy in Southern Europe". This project proposes a comparative bottom-up approach to human welfare calculus and welfare sustainability, focusing on the theoretical relevance of the concept of ‘everyday worlds of welfare’ (EWW). I provisionally define EWW as the historically and locally embedded set of practices, normative livelihood ethics and folk valuation arguments informing how households and individuals define and pursue the fulfilment of tangible and intangible needs (i.e. resources and claims) necessary to secure intergenerational livelihood sustainability. In a context of rising inequalities and the need of enhancing the resilience of European welfare-states, the EWW concept will allow outlining a more holistic framework of welfare analysis, with the potential to act as a valuable compass on the relation between people's embedded knowledges and social policy interventions. It will foster novel ways to devise greater equity in the distribution of well-being resources and its sustainability across generations. It will contribute to the formulation of more inclusive wellbeing indicators, thus responding to the recent call made by leading academics and political agents to shift towards a Wellbeing Economy strategy in a post-COVID world . Patrícia Alves de Matos is also an auxiliary invited lecturer in anthropology at FCSH/New University of Lisbon. Her research interests include: neoliberalism, precarity and labour; gender, body politics and social reproduction; austerity welfare, needs and moralities of distribution. Her monograph titled "Disciplined Agency: neoliberal precarity, generational dispossession and call centre labour in Portugal" was published by Manchester University Press in July 2020.