Despite a growing understanding of market infrastructures—the rules and socio-material arrangements that enable agreements on the properties of goods, and the calculation of value, equivalence and exchange—we know little of what lies beneath the arrangements that underpin and are implicated in exchange. The socio-material lens has done much to explain how specific assemblages circulate information and goods, but has done little to explain how different infrastructures configure relations between dispersed market practices. Using the history of the development of the market for market research we show how knowledge-based infrastructures constitute markets as knowledge objects: new expertise emerged through alliances between academia, government, and private actors form a new occupation embodied in specialist agencies that set themselves up in an infrastructural relation to marketing practices. Our conceptualization of markets as knowledge objects extends extant understandings of markets by showing how: (1) extant knowledge-based infrastructures are drawn on to construct new markets; (2) infrastructural relations emerge between different markets to constitute multiple systems of provision and demand, leading to an increasingly valuable knowledge infrastructure; and (3) organized practices in one market are often heavily reliant on connections to other markets, including knowledge-based infrastructures such as market research services.
|Number of pages||12|
|Early online date||17 Nov 2021|
|Publication status||Published - 15 Dec 2021|
- market research as a knowledge-based infrastructure