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Governing Precarity through Adaptive Design

than how it ought to be . In celebrating the positive demand for empathy, humility and resilience, adaptive design supplants the call for systemic change. This conservatism is an example of how a progressive neoliberalism ( Fraser, 2017 ) is dissolving and sapping the powers of resistance ( Han, 2010 ). The excessive positivity of adaptive design, its endless willingness to happily fail-forward into the future, suits the economic logic of late-capitalism. 2 To draw this out, it is necessary to first review the latter’s greatest achievement

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs
Editor’s Introduction

worst of its rippling social consequences rebelled against systemic injustices. Left-leaning protest movements of indignados took to the streets. They rejected economic austerity and promoted progressive social reform. But they soon became marginal to the spreading politics of anger. In the main, the global backlash is now directed against progressive neoliberalism – the dominant ideological variant of late liberalism – with its ‘flexibilisation’ of everything in the economic sphere and its disintegration of tradition in the social sphere

Journal of Humanitarian Affairs