Welcome to the interactive schedule for the fall 2016 CoLED Conference.
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Ethnography and Design: Mutual Provocations is made possible through funding from the UC Office of the President, the Wenner-Gren Foundation, and participating units across University of California campuses.
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avatar for Mrinalini Tankha

Mrinalini Tankha

University of California, Irvine
Postdoctoral Scholar at the Institute for Money, Technology, & Financial Inclusion
Irvine, CA
I am an economic and sociocultural anthropologist currently working as a Postdoctoral Scholar at the Institute for Money, Technology and Financial Inclusion, University of California, Irvine. I am also a Research Fellow for A Sustainable Future for Exuma: Environmental Management, Design and Planning at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design.

My research examines the cultural and moral meanings of money in Cuba’s dual currency economy, given its contested re-insertion into the global market. My interest in postsocialist transition and emerging markets comes from having grown up in pre-liberalization India and in Vietnam during its implementation of the Doi-Moi economic reforms.

I conducted ethnographic research in Havana, over four years, focusing on social practices of multiple currency exchange as a way of revealing the broader structural contradictions of everyday life in Cuba. My work demonstrates the ways money mediates the confrontation between rigid political ideologies and shifting consumption patterns; informal payment schemes; hybrid business practices; and emerging labor hierarchies. I am currently working on a book manuscript titled The New Cuban Counterpoint: Money and Currency Exchange in Post-Soviet Cuba.