Professor Karel Williams

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Profile photo of: Professor Karel Williams Email: Show Email Address
Position: Professor of Accounting and Political Economy
Academic unit: People, Management and Organisations


Further details will be available shortly.

Research Interests

Karel Williams is director of the ESRC funded Centre for Research on Socio Cultural Change (CRESC) where he leads research by an MBS team into financialization and financial innovation. Their major outputs so far include a book on the narrative and performative turn in giant firm strategy and a broad ranging financialization reader. With the sociologist Mike Savage, he is working to revive elite studies initially through an edited book which will be published as a Sociological Review Monograph. He supervises PhD students in these areas of interest and currently teaches an MBA elective in Strategic Finance.

Programme involvement

Specialist fields




Publication summary




Working papers

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Showing 67 publication(s)


  • Engelen, E., Erturk, I., Froud, J., Leaver, A., & Williams, K. (2017). Reconceptualizing financial innovation: frame, conjuncture, bricolage. In I. Erturk, & D. Gabor (Eds.), The Routledge Companion to Banking Regulation and Reform. (pp. 111-134). Oxford: Routledge. . Publication link: fce3cb5c-baa6-4fe3-8fd8-07586a8dabca


  • Froud, J., Tischer, D., & Williams, K. (2016). It's the business model... Reframing the problems of UK retail banking. Critical Perspectives on Accounting, n/a. . Publication link: 7aa414d7-1373-4c57-8c63-d69e9c146134


  • Williams, K., Bowman, A., Froud, J., Johal, S., Leaver, A., Cowling, D. B. K. (Ed.), & Tomlinson, P. R. (Ed.) (2015). Reframing industrial policy. In New Perspectives on Industrial Policy for a Modern Britain. (pp. 60-78). Oxford: Oxford University Press. . Publication link: fb61d2dc-9b08-4ced-8388-3f512dd4e720
  • Williams, K., Brill, L., Cowie, L., Folkman, P., Froud, J., Johal, S., ... Moran, M. (2015). What Wales could be. (CRESC report for Federation of Small Businesses (Wales)). Manchester: Publication link: 0b8f81d5-4dd3-495c-928e-f6aa2fa351da
  • Bowman, A., Williams, K., Erturk, I., Folkman, P., Froud, J., Haslam, C., ... Tsitsianis, N. (2015). What a waste: Outsourcing and how it goes wrong. (!st ed.) (Manchester Capitalism). Manchester: Manchester University Press.. Publication link: 1229bbcb-2961-4ffb-9840-75159f994952





  • Engelen, E., Williams, K., Erturk, I., Froud, J., Johal, S., Leaver, A., ... Nilsson, A. (2011). After the Great Complacence: Financial Crisis and the Politics of Reform. Oxford: Oxford University Press.. Publication link: 743240b0-10eb-4588-8581-c37507c4d386



  • Froud, J., Leaver, A., Johal, S., Nilsson, A., & Williams, K. (2009). Narratives and the financialised firm. Kolner Zeitschrift fur Soziologie und Sozialpsychologie, (49), 288-476. . Publication link: 6d20955d-c187-49c9-a401-7a0a30349936


  • Froud, J., Leaver, A., Tampubolon, G., & Williams, K. (2008). Everything for sale: How non-executive directors make a difference: how non executive directors make a difference. In Sociological Review|Sociol. Rev.. (Vol. 56, pp. 162-186). Oxford: Blackwells/Sociological Review. DOI: 10.1111/j.1467-954X.2008.00767.x. Publication link: 481c95b0-af46-4edc-b9bc-ab6fd917a772
  • Williams, K., Erturk, I., Froud, J., & Leaver, A. (2008). Financialization at Work: Key Texts and Comentary. London: Routledge.. Publication link: 9cd5f650-36ef-41cc-b2c8-c43ad508f0ba



  • Froud, J., Williams, K., Erturk, I., Johal, S., & Leaver, A. (2005). The Democratisation of Finance: promises, outcomes and conditions (translated into German Finanz-Demokratisierung und finanzielle Allgemeinbildung). Kurswechsel, 3. . Publication link: e3434edd-e2c7-46fd-adb5-4604352beb87
  • Ertürk, I., Froud, J., Johal, S., Leaver, A., & Williams, K. (2005). Democratisation of finance and financial literacy. Kurswechsel,3, 42-54. . Publication link: 5f89655d-f640-40e2-a8d1-625df7ba9911
  • Leaver, A., Froud, J., Johal, S., Williams, K., & Erturk, I. (2005). Branded Capitalism: a cultural economy approach to financialisation. In 13th GERPISA International Colloquium, 'Productive Organisations, Employment Relationships and Financialisation: Specificities of the Automotive Industry'.. Publication link: 87147795-a094-4298-ad4e-978a105bbe35
  • Erturk, I., Froud, J., Johal, S., Leaver, A., & Williams, K. (2005). Corporate Governance for Shareholder Value or Management Enrichment? (translated into French La gouvernance d'enterprise au service de la valeuractionnariale ou de l'enrichissement des dirigeants?). A Contrario, 2, 2. . Publication link: 2d37f57f-9fc9-470e-8f33-71844d661357
  • Froud, J., Haslam, C., Johal, S., Williams, K., & Clarke, T. (Ed.) (2005). Shareholder Value and Financialization: Consultancy Promises, Management Moves. In Corporate Governance Volume 2 Anglo American Corporate Governance. Routledge. . Publication link: 54314421-19cb-45a1-94a4-799021ab4d22


  • Leaver, A., Froud, J., Johal, S., & Williams, K. (2004). Value-Based Management and The Workforce. In O Trabalho no Seculo XXI' - Seminario Internacional.. Publication link: c4711d15-d5a2-459e-b1c8-e55e451a1d7e


  • Leaver, A., Froud, J., Johal, S., & Williams, K. (2003). Financialisation, Strategy and Governance: or what management has become. In Critical management Studies Conference: Critique and Inclusivity: Opening the Agenda.. Publication link: bc0a0cc5-4add-49c1-8033-df41e6682e69


  • Froud, J., & Williams, K. (2002). Cars After Financialisation: a case study in financial under-performance, constraints and consequences. Competition and Change, 7(1). . Publication link: 68df8d7e-ffb3-4773-a73f-a16e9affc8af
  • Froud, J., Shaoul, J., Williams, K., & Coates, D. (Ed.) (2002). Sinking Ships? Liberal theorists on the American economy. In Models of Capitalism - Debating Strengths and Weaknesses. Edward Elgar. . Publication link: 752cb336-0e4f-427b-b00b-1912d872e7c9


  • Leaver, A., Froud, J., Johal, S., & Williams, K. (2001). The Resources and the Choices of the Motoring Poor in London. In SOFI Research Institute.. Publication link: e4fd46fb-884d-47fb-8fff-1e8a74cca365


  • Froud, J., & Williams, K. (2000). Shareholder Value and Financialisation Consultancy Promises, Management Moves. Economy and Society, 29, 1. . Publication link: 40acf673-59c0-4c04-8653-2ec32c338051
  • Froud, J., & Williams, K. (2000). Representing the Household: In and After Income Accounting. Auditing and Accountability Journal, 13, 4. . Publication link: 788beb55-1b77-4c22-bbff-2ae6a7c35c91
  • Williams, K., Froud, J., Williams, K., Johal, S., & Haslam, C. (2000). Restructuring for shareholder value and its implications for labour. Cambridge Journal of Economics, 24(6), 771-797. . Publication link: bcb414c9-12d8-4e50-92df-7c3165cab01a



  • Froud, J., Williams, K., Haslam, C., Johal, S., & Williams, J. (1998). Caterpillar: Two stories and an argument. Accounting, Organizations and Society, 23(7), 685-708. . Publication link: c0e47c8f-c9da-4586-b9ca-dd7efa1aa535
  • Froud, J., Haslam, C., Johal, S., Williams, K., & Willis, R. (1998). British pharmaceuticals: a cautionary tale. Economy and Society, 27(4), 554-584. . Publication link: 50705141-5e9a-4b46-ab86-66938b34a9f5
  • Froud, J., Shaoul, J., & Williams, K. (1998). Persuasion Without Numbers? Public Policy: The Justification of Capital Charging in the NHS Trust Hospital. Accounting, Auditing and Accountability Journal , 11, No 1. . Publication link: a41ba153-af8a-4746-9289-c7f9eef175c5


  • Froud, J., Haslam, C., Johal, S., Williams, J., & Williams, K. (1997). From social settlement to household lottery. Economy and Society, 26(3), 340-372. . Publication link: 56032ade-6a39-4015-ad8e-0b030cb469bc


  • Froud, J., Shaoul, J., & Williams, K. (1996). Stakeholder Economy? From Utility Privatisation to New Labour. Capital and Class, 60, autumn. . Publication link: 261dfbe6-b806-4a7a-9abf-896d27ad03dd
  • Froud, J., Haslam, C., Johal, S., Shaoul, J., & Williams, K. (1996). Sinking ships? Liberal theorists on the American economy. Asia Pacific Business Review, 3(1), 54-72. . Publication link: 76969b49-5f8c-4c60-a5dd-19c962455b80