Prof. Dr. Martin Albrow

University of Wales

Martin AlbrowMartin AlbrowMartin Albrow

Curriculum Vitae

Martin Albrow is an eminent - and one of the first - globalization theorists and one of the most renowned English-language experts on Max Weber's writings. He studied history and sociology at the London School of Economics as well as at the University of Cambridge, where he obtained his doctorate degree in 1971. Before accepting a position as Professor for Sociological Theory at the University of Wales in 1976, he worked, inter alia, as assistant to Norbert Elias at the University of Leicester. Since 1988, he has held many guest professorships and fellowships in Europe and the United States, including at the London School of Economics, the University of Munich, the State University New York as well as the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington, D.C. His book "The Global Age" was awarded the University of Rome's European Amalfi Prize for Sociology and Social Sciences. Martin Albrow is Honorary Vice-President of the British Sociological Association and member of the International Futures Forum.
From October 2012 until September 2013, Martin Albrow was Fellow at the Käte Hamburger Center for Advanced Study in the Humanities “Law as Culture”, where he was conducting research on the topic of "Globalization, multiculturalism and principles of global governance". Since October 2013, Professor Albrow is Senior Fellow at the center.

Research Project

Globalization, multiculturalism and principles of global governance

Under conditions of globalization the future well being of the human species often appears to depend on a stark choice between imperial hegemony, uneasy bipolar domination or ineffective global governance. And those are the better alternatives to the clash of civilizations which many hold to be inevitable. These are however viewpoints which arise out of deep assumptions in Western intellectual and cultural traditions. The question this project asks is whether the pivotal Western ideas: society, markets, goals, values, principles, citizenship, sovereignty, democracy, freedom and the rule of law are adequate to empower an order which can respond to the threats to humankind as a whole. We need to explore a revised canon, which prioritises networks, relationships, co-operation, power, information and common purpose to meet global challenges and we need to learn from non-Western traditions in a necessary fundamental review of this kind.

Selected Publications

  • Global Age Essays on Social and Cultural Change (Volume 5 of the Series "Law as Culture", ed. by Werner Gephart), Frankfurt am Main: Klostermann 2014.
  • Niklas Luhmann: A Sociological Theory of Law (2nd edition, edited by Martin Albrow, translated conjointly by Martin Albrow & Elizabeth King-Utz), London: Routledge 2014).
  • 'Weber's Verstehende Approach', in: Byron Kaldis (Ed.): Encyclopaedia of Philosophy and the Social Sciences, London: Sage (forthcoming).
  • Global Civil Society 2011: Globality and the Absence of Justice (Co-Ed. with Hakan Seckinelgin), Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan 2011.
  • Sociology: The Basics, London/New York: Routledge 1999.
  • The Global Age: State and Society beyond Modernity, Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press 1997 (translated into German, Japanese, Chinese and Farsi).
  • Max Weber´s Construction of Social Theory, London: Macmillan/New York: St Martin's 1990.
  • Globalization, Knowledge and Society: Readings from International Sociology (Co-Ed. with Elizabeth King), London/Newbury Park/New Delhi: Sage in association with the International Sociological Association 1990.
  • Bureaucracy, London: Pall Mall/New York: Praeger/London: Macmillan 1970 (8th printing 1992) (translated into Dutch, German, Swedish, Norwegian, Italian and Japanese).