Ana Flavia Pulsini Louzada Badue

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

New York, Graduate Center, City U. of

Grant number

Gr. 9865

Approve Date

May 1, 2019

Project Title

Pulsini Louzada Badue, Ana Flavia (New York, Graduate Center, City U. of) "Drones, angels and unicorns: financial capitalism and digital technologies in Brazilian industrial farming"

The number of agriculture startups that sell information to industrial farms in Brazil skyrocketed since 2016. Angels (wealthy investors) and venture capitalists invest in these companies expecting them to grow and become “unicorns”, valued at more than $1 billion. My research investigates how the development of digital technologies applied to agribusiness became a fertile soil to the flourishing of financial capitalism in Brazil, and how this process transforms rural life. Scholarships that analyze financial capitalism and digital technologies mostly concentrate in urban Global North contexts. This research advances these debates by examining financialization and technology from a rural setting in the Global South. By conducting interviews with startup founders, investors and farmers, attending digital agribusiness events and analyzing documents, this project offers new understandings on how big data and algorithms call out for financial investments which look for fast profits; how financial investments foster and benefit from digital technologies; and what changes they bring to rural life. This project expands scholarship on agrarian transformation by shedding light on new moneys and new technologies used in industrial farming; and it expands the scholarship on financial capitalism by putting digital technologies used for farming in the center of processes of financialization.