Department News 2023-24

Events, media, appointments, publications and more


Economic History alum Miatta Fahnbulleh elected as MP

Miatta Fahnbulleh was elected MP for Camberwell and Peckham in the July 2024 election, and subsequently appointed Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero. 

Miatta completed a master's and then PhD in economic development, receiving her doctorate in 2005. 


Juan José Rivas Moreno wins 2024 Coleman Prize

Juan's PhD thesis, "An Alternative Model for Early Modern long-distance Trade Finance: The Capital Market of Manila, 1668-1838" was awarded the Coleman Prize at this year's Association of Business Historians Conference, York, 27-29 June.

The Coleman Prize is for the best doctoral dissertation in business history. 


Financial Times features key takeaways of EUI/LSE conference 'What is a financial crisis'

The recent conference 'What is a financial crisis' aimed to open a discussion on the various definitions, understandings, analyses, narratives and memories of financial crises from various disciplinary viewpoints. Scholars from around the world gathered to discuss, in particular, how memory affects our assessment of risk.

Keynote speaker Gillian Tett, Provost of King's College Cambridge and Financial Times columnist, summed up her thoughts on the issues raised in her article 'Crisis memory, geopolitics and the risks of financial contagion'.

This is a paywalled article, but LSE staff and students have free access via the Library.

Dr Maria Alejandra Irigoin

Alejandra Irigoin winner in LSESU 2024 teaching awards

The LSESU Teaching awards highlights excellence across a range of categories. Dr Irigoin is this year's winner for excellence in feedback and communication. 

Read more about this year's winners here: 2024 LSESY Teaching Awards


Genealogical Sources in Economic History 2024

With generous support from the LSE's Global Research Fund, the Historical Economic Demography (HED) Group held its first workshop on genealogical sources, a resource attracting interdisciplinary research interest due to its presence across many societies and centuries.

You can read more about this event here: Geneological Sources in Economic History 


Jason Lennard featured in The Economic History podcast

Jason Lennard discusses his research on business cycles with host Sean Kenny, including how they are measured and how they have changed through time, implications of rigid wages during economic downturns, and new evidence on the existence of "sticky wages" during the Great Depression in the UK.  

You can listen to the podcast here: The Economic History Podcast


'Do Economists Care? ' Professor Jane Humphries to deliver the RES Annual Public Lecture, Monday 10 June

Established in 2001, the Annual Public Lecture provides an opportunity for school students to watch internationally renowned economists present their work.  The focus of Professor Humphries' lecture will be economists’ problematic neglect of unpaid caring and household labour for the estimation of output and wellbeing. Her lecture will explore  implications as well as attempts to assign valuations from market equivalents. 

RES President, Professor Mary Morgan will chair the lecture.

Find out more about the lecture here: Do Economists Care? 


Professor Mohamed Saleh awarded British Academy Mid-Career Fellowship

The Mid-Career Fellowships recognises researchers who have achieved distinction as excellent communicators and ‘champions’ in their fields, and whose whose research will promote public engagement with and understanding of social sciences, humanities and the arts.

Professor Saleh's project, Intra-Elite Conflict and the Reluctant Democratization of the Middle East and North Africa, aims at developing a new economic history of the Middle East that explains the economic roots of authoritarianism in the region.

More information about the fellowships and successful projects is here: British Academy Mid-Career Fellowships


Professor Eric Scheider featured in The Economic History podcast

Professor Schneider features in the podcast 'Heights in (Economic) History', and talks about his use of data on heights as a measure of well-being, in particular his use of crew records from a British ship in operation for over a century, which became source of data on human growth patterns over longer time horizons. He also discusses revisiting old height data with new insights from the medical literature and applies this framework to the existing data on enslaved children.

You can listen to tthe podcast here: Heights in (Economic) History

The podcast is part of the Economic History Podcast series, which features leading academics talking on a range of topics, from pandemics, long run economic growth, to gender issues, financial crises and more.

Janet Hunter

The economic impact of natural disasters: Japan's Great Kantō Earthquake of 1923

Wednesday 22 May 2024, 6-7.30pm, Wolfson Theatre, Cheng Kin Ku Building

Professor Janet Hunter looks at contemporary explanations of the economic impact of Japan's greatest natural disaster of modern times, and how they foreshadow later scholarship.

More information about this event, including a link to the recording, is available here: Japan's Great Kantō Earthquake of 1923


Professor Chris Minns made Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences 

Fellows are elected for their substantial contributions to social science. This is much more than economic history: fellows are active in a range of areas including land law reform, rural socio-economic change, ageing populations, urban development challenges and migration.   

On announcing the Fellows, the President of the Academy, Will Hutton, said: “At a time when the importance of the social sciences to addressing many pressing issues cannot be overstated, it’s a pleasure to welcome these 41 leading social scientists to the Academy’s Fellowship. Their contributions have furthered our understanding in tackling a wide range of societal challenges including mitigating health and economic inequalities, understanding the causes and effects of hate crime, the development of inclusive practices in education, and the future of cities. We look forward to working with them to further promote the vital role the social sciences play in all areas of our lives.” 

Congratulations to Chris for this well-deserved accolade.

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Goldman Sachs Gives (UK) - Oppenheimer MSc in Financial History Scholarship

We are very pleased announce that LSE is offering the Goldman Sachs Gives (UK) - Oppenheimer MSc in Financial History Scholarship for the academic year 2024/25.

More details, including eligibility and how to apply, can be found here: Goldman Sachs Gives (UK) - Oppenheimer MSc in Financial History Scholarship


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The Silver Empire: how Germany created its first common currency


Oliver Volckart will discuss his new book "The Silver Empire", in which he examines the conditions leading to the creation of Germany's first common currency.

Full details here: The Silver Empire


"Money in Renaissance Germany"

Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, 12 January-10 November 2024 

Professor Oliver Volckart has co-curated a fascinating display of coins exploring the creation in 1559 of a common currency throughout the Holy Roman Empire. Incidentally, this was the first European currency to consistently use Arab numerals to mark the coins' face values.

Find out more about this free display here: Money in Renaissance Germany


Epstein Lecture 2024: 217 million census records: evidence from linked census data

Speaker: James Feigenbaum, Boston University

Thursday 7 March, 6.30-8pm, Auditorium, Centre Building, and online

New historical census sources and advances in record linking technology, allow economic historians to become big data genealogists. In this lecture, James Feigenbaum will show how the ability to link individuals over time, and between databases, means that new avenues for research have opened up, thus allowing us to track intergenerational mobility, assimilation, discrimination and the returns to education.

No ticket or pre-registration is required for the in-person event, as entry is on a first come, first served basis. 

Registration for the online event will open after 10am, Thursday 15 February 2023.

You can find more information here: 217 million census records: evidence from linked census data

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Public Event: As Gods Among Men

Speaker: Guido Alfani, Bocconi University

In his latest book, which forms the basis of this lecture, Guido Alfani offers a history of the rich and the super-rich in the West, examining who they were, how they accumulated their wealth and what role they played in society. His account offers a novel perspective on current debates about wealth and income disparity.

For more information go to the event's page: As gods among men


Alumni Event: Any Happy Returns: Structural Changes and Super Cycles in Markets

Hosted by the Department of Economic History and the Economic History Advisory Board (EHAB)

Speaker: Peter C. Oppenheimer

Tuesday 30 January, 6.30-8.00pm, Thai Theatre, CKK Building

In his new book, which forms the basis of this event, Oppenheimer discusses how structural changes in macroeconomic drivers, geopolitics, government policy and social attitudes all combine to drive secular super cycles that help to explain investor returns. 

Peter C. Oppenheimer is chief global equity strategist and head of Macro Research in Europe within Global Investment Research at Goldman Sachs.

This is an in-person event for alumni and pre-registration is required. For more information and to register, go to the event's webpage: Any Happy Returns

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When Nations Can't Default: A History of War Reparations and Sovereign Debt

Simon Hinrichsen, University of Copenhagen) tells the history of war reparations and their consequences through the lense of history, political economy, and open economy macroeconomics. He argues that reparations are unlike other sovereign debt because repayment is enforced by military and political force, making it a senior liability of the state. His book analyses fifteen episodes of war reparations, looking at when reparations were paid and when not. 

Simon Hinrichsen recently graduated from LSE with a PhD from the Department of Economic History.

Find out more here about his book here:  When nations can't default



Research Showcase: Professor Neil Cummins 

The Last Will and Sentiment: what wills reveal about English social, economic and psychological history  

Tuesday 31 October, 11.00–11.30am
Shaw Library, 6th Floor, Old Building

For the past millennium, the ‘‘last Will and Testament’’ has guided the transmission of wealth at death in England. Millions of these handwritten documents exist, representing our best record of individual lives and the economic, family, social and religious influences which mattered most to people as they contemplated their death.

Professor Neil Cummins will draw on a new, large sample of wills to quantitatively reconstruct English economic, social and psychological history, documenting the behavioural roots of the modern world.

More information about the series and how to sign up: LSE Research Showcase . 

Research showcases are 30-minute coffee-break talks on campus, featuring fascinating research from the LSE academic community. The talks are open to LSE staff, students, alumni and prospective students. 

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Professor Nick Crafts (1949-2023)

The department is deeply saddened by the death of Professor Nick Crafts, former Convenor of the Department, and a great friend and colleague. He was generous with his time, and supportive of students and young scholars and, above all, very funny. 

Nick was, quite literally, a giant of his field and an inspiration to many. His work with Knick Harley, reinterpreting the British Industrial Revolution remains influential and much discussed. 

Nick joined the Department of Economic History at LSE in 1995 and stayed for 10 years before returning to Warwick, where he was the founding Director of CAGE.

A condolences page is available here for colleagues and friends wishing to leave a message: Professor Nick Crafts Condolences Page  


Dr Jason Lennard wins 2023 Figuerola Prize 

Jason is the 2023 winner of the “Figuerola Prize", which the Instituto Figuerola de Historia y Ciencias Socialies awards biannually for the best article published in the European Review of Economic History, journal of the European Historical Economic Society (EHES). 

The winning article is Sticky wages and the Great Depression: evidence from the United Kingdom (European Review of Economic History, 2023 issue2, vol 27, pp. 196-222)

Photo of Safya Morshed

Dr Safya Morshed awarded 2023 Gino Luzzatto Prize

Safya is the 2023 winner of the Gino Luzzatto Prize, awarded at the EHES Society conference for the best PhD dissertation.

Safya won for her thesis, The Evolutionary Empire: Demystifying State Formation in Mughal South Asia (1556 1707), in which she studies the effects of conflicts on state formation in Mughal South Asia.  

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Leigh Gardner's Sovereignty without Power: Liberia in the age of empires, 1822-1980 receives prestigious award

Leigh Gardner, Professor of Economic HIstory, has won the Lindert-Williamson Prize at the 2023 Economic History Association conference, for her book Sovereignty without Power: Liberia in the age of empires, 1822-1980 

The prize is awarded biennially for the most outstanding book in global, African, Asian, Australian and/or South American History.

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Historical Economic Demography (HED) Group

HED is an interdisciplinary network of LSE researchers exploring changes in population, health, migration, living standards and social mobility over time, from the Middle Ages to the present and across all continents. The group is led jointly by Professor Eric Schneider and Professor Neil Cummins.

Find more about HED's members, research and events here: Historical Economic Demography 


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Public event: The economic government of the world, 1933-2023

Speaker: Professor Martin Daunton

Thursday 26 October, 6.30-8.00pm, Old Theatre, LSE and online

Economic historian Professor Martin Daunton will talk about this new book, The economic government of the world, 1933-2023. This pulls back the curtain on the institutions and individuals who have created and managed the economy over the last ninety years, revealing how and why one economic order breaks down and another is built.

This event is co-hosted by the Department of Economic History and the Economic HIstory Advisory Board.

For more information and details of how to register go to the event page: The economic government of the world, 1933-2023

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Slavery, capitalism and the Industrial Revolution

Maxine Berg, Pat Hudson, Nick Draper, Tirthankar Roy, Patrick Wallis

Tuesday 10 October 2023, 7-8.30pm,  PAN G.01 (Pankhurst House), LSE 

A round table discussion of themes raised in Maxine Berg and Pat Hudson’s Slavery, capitalism and the Industrial Revolution. Berg and Hudson ‘follow the money’, detailing the role of slavery in the making of Britain’s industrial revolution, and its development as a global superpower. 

For more information and details of how to register go to the event page: Slavery, capitalism and the Industrial Revolution


Public event: Trends and determinants of global child malnutrition: what can we learn from history?

Speaker: Professor Eric Schneider

Thursday 16 November 2023 6.30-8.00pm, Auditorium, Centre Building, LSE and online

In his inaugural lecture Eric Schneider will explore how child malnutrition, measured through child growth, has changed over the past 150 years around the world. Children with poor nutrition or who are exposed to high levels of chronic disease grow more slowly than healthy children. Thus, children’s growth is a sensitive metric of how population health has evolved over time.

For more information and details of how to register to to the event page: Trends and determinants of global child malnutrition

Professor Mary Morgan

Public event: How economics changes the world

Speaker: Professor Mary S. Morgan

Thursday 23 November 2023 6.30-8.00pm, Auditorium, Centre Building, LSE

Do economists’ ideas change the ways the economic world works? While the conventional view is that ideas create policy change and economic change follows on, it is just not that simple. We can see what is involved by looking at major changes, such as the reconstruction of post-war economies, post-colonial economic development planning, or switching from capitalist to socialist systems. Designing such new kinds of worlds required new ways of thinking about how the economic world could work involving imagination and cognitive work, and new kinds of economic measurements and accounting systems to deliver that change. Economic ideas are ‘performative’, meaning that they do change the ways economies work - but not on their own.

For more information and details of how to register to to the event page: How economics changes the world