2 Matching Annotations
  1. Mar 2023
    1. Legal affordances arise from relations within and between bodies of law at different scales, where questions of definition, jurisdiction and applicability configure the legal space of NAPFs’ strategy and the physical space of operations. We highlight how a focus on legal affordances as comprised of absences, ambiguity and arbitrage allows us to see how NAPFs use legal and spatial scaling to connect the local to the transnational. We also suggest that social activism concerned with property, labor, and public thoroughfare rights can challenge legal affordances. These challenges can then be pushed at different scales where adjudication may be on offer, but are also limited given that NAPFs have considerable resources to spend in fending off legal challenges.

      Interesting - but misses the 'alternative positive construction' of these affordances. The absences and ambiguity can be deployed regeneratively as well as in the form of resistance. This is building in the cracks rather than litigating the ugly new buildings.

    2. NAPFs combine the opportunistic use of bodies of law, the spatial demarcation of the firm's corporate structure, and economic activities occurring in bounded local spaces. These firms do not use bodies of law as external resources, but integrate legal and spatial scaling into their everyday operations. Legal affordances are a privilege supported by a transnational interpretative community of professionals that promotes their widespread recognition through “embedded spaces of social practice” (Faulconbridge, 2007; Harrington and Seabrooke 2020). Legal affordance differs from legal provision, which is a granted right and commonly viewed as fixed and static external resources. As we clarify below, NAPFs use legal affordances to construct what David Harvey (1973, 2006) referred to as relational space that empowers their capacity to exploit other people's assets and avoid regulatory burdens.

      Distinction between legal provision and legal affordance is useful at a general level - although the opportunistic use is not as distinct from legal provision as they say, given that no law is in practice ever really static. But the construction of 'relational space' for extractive purposes is paradoxical and disturbing.