Friday, June 28, 2013

SEHR Offers Open Access To Selected Articles

The Scandinavian Economic History Review occasionally offers open access to articles that the editors believe are relevant to a broader audience in economic, business, and social history. Now available is Joel Mokyr, "Cultural entrepreneurs and the origins of modern economic growth" (vol. 61, no. 1, 2013). The previously announced availability of Geoffrey Jones, Marco H. D. van Leeuwen, and Stephen Broadberry, "The future of economic, business, and social history" (vol. 60, no. 3, 2012), continues.
     Additional open access articles can be found by browsing through the contents archives (for example, vol. 59, issue 3 [2011] can be freely accessed). For more about the SEHR, please consult the journal website.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

“New Histories of Sugar” Conference Registration Open

The John Carter Brown Library at Brown University will host a conference, "Beyond Sweetness: New Histories of Sugar in the Early Atlantic World," on October 24-27, 2013. The program and registration information have now been posted on the conference website.
    Over two dozen speakers from the United States, Canada, and the Caribbean will evaluate the current state of scholarship, consider alternative consumer cultures and economies, and assess new directions in the study of sugar. Stuart B. Schwartz of Yale University will give the keynote address on the opening day. The conference is timed to coincide with the JCB’s fall 2013 exhibition, "Sugar and the Visual Imagination in the Atlantic World, c 1650-1840."
     For full details, please visit the conference website. The registration deadline is October 1, 2013.

     [N.B.: Readers interested in this topic might also wish to visit the on-line exhibit at the Clements Library at the University of Michigan, "Sugar in the Atlantic World."]

Monday, June 24, 2013

EBHA 2013 Congress Program Now Posted

The European Business History Association (EBHA) will hold its 2013 Congress in Uppsala, Sweden, on August 22-24, 2013. The program for this year's meeting, for which the theme is "Innovation and Growth," can now be found on the Congress website. Abstracts and full papers will be linked from the program as they become available. The keynote speaker for the Congress will be Riitta Hjerppe, emerita professor of economic history at the University of Helsinki, Finland.
     For additional information about the meeting, please consult the Congress website; questions may be directed to the meeting coordinator, Kristina Lilja, at ebha2013@ekhist.uu.se.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Robert W. Fogel, 1926-2013

Robert W. Fogel, a Nobel Prize-winning economic historian, died on June 11, 2013.  At the time of his death, at 86, he remained an active faculty member in the Department of Economics and at the Booth School of Business at the University of Chicago. Fogel was the Charles R. Walgreen Distinguished Service Professor of American Institutions, director of the University of Chicago Center for Population Economics, and a faculty member of the John U. Nef Committee on Social Thought. Perhaps best known for Time on the Cross: The Economics of American Negro Slavery (1974, written with Stanley Engerman)—in which was collected and analyzed massive data showing that slavery was a far more profitable economic institution than had been previously thought—Fogel had already generated controversy among historians with his earlier work, Railroads and American Economic Growth: Essays in Econometric History (1964), in which he argued that the U.S. economy in the 1800s would have grown at the same rate, even if railroads had not existed. He was a pioneer in the application of quantitative methods to economic history, dubbed "cliometrics," and  in the development of the use of counterfactuals among historians.
    More recently, Fogel had  focused on, in his words, “the problem of creating and studying larger life-cycle and intergenerational data sets.” The result was many research papers, articles and books on the economics of aging. His most recent book is Political Arithmetic: Simon Kuznets and the Empirical Tradition in Economics (University of Chicago Press, 2013); Kuznets was Fogel's thesis adviser at Johns Hopkins.
    Obituaries abound; examples can be found in the New York Times, The Economist, the Los Angeles Times, the Washington Post, and at the University of Chicago. Sir Roderick Floud has also posted a substantive commentary on the EHS website.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Web Exhibit: History of Product Packaging at Hagley

An exhibit on the "History of Product Packaging" represents an ongoing joint effort between the Hagley Museum and Library and the History Department at the University of Delaware. Professor Katherine Grier's graduate students at the University of Delaware researched and wrote papers on the topic, using the Hagley's resources. Then one of those students, John Vanek, created the Web exhibit.  The exhibit seeks to highlight questions such as "Where do product packages fit into the history of advertising and branding? To changes in technology? To the growth of consumerism? To shifting social values?" The exhibit details the history of consumer packaging in the United States over the last 150 years, with text and materials arranged under topics including "Self-Service," "Branding," and "Afterlives." When Professor Grier teaches History 867 again, a new group of students will research more objects from the Hagley collections, and the exhibit will be expanded accordingly.

Monday, June 17, 2013

2013 Asian Business History Conference Announced

A newly created group, the Asian Business History Conference, will hold its first meeting on July 13-14, 2013, at Thammasat Business School in Bangkok, Thailand. The theme of the meeting is "Siam Then, Thailand Now: Creating Thai Capitalism during Two Eras of Globalization." As the conference organizers explain:
Although much is known about the varieties of capitalism that developed in Europe, North America and Japan, historical research on those in emerging economies is still relatively limited. This conference . . . will contribute to filling this gap in existing scholarship by addressing the many internal and external forces that shaped the development of Thai capitalism in the broader context of global business history.
Please consult the meeting website for a fuller description of the meeting's aims and other details. The program for the meeting has been posted there; Geoffrey Jones of the Harvard Business School will serve as the keynote speaker.
    The conference idea was initiated by Julia Yonge of Hosei University; her co-organizers are Pavida Pananond and Patnaree Srisuphaolarn of Thammasat Business School and Martin Jes Iversen of Copenhagen Business School. Please direct any inquiries to Julia Yongue.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Reminder: Business History Conference Meeting 2014

As the summer begins, we remind readers of the call for papers for the next Business History Conference annual meeting, which will be held in Frankfurt, Germany, on March 13-15, in cooperation with the Gesellschaft für Unternehmensgeschichte. The theme of the meeting is “The Virtues and Vices of Business — A Historical Perspective.” A full description of the topic and details about submitting a proposal are available in the call for papers. The deadline for receipt of all proposals is September 15, 2013.
    Graduate students are reminded of the the Oxford Journals Doctoral Colloquium in Business History, held in conjunction with the BHC annual meeting. This prestigious workshop, sponsored by the BHC and funded by the Journals Division of Oxford University Press, will take place in Frankfurt on Wednesday, March 12, and Thursday, March 13, 2014. The Colloquium is limited to ten students. Please consult the call for papers for information about applying. The deadline for Colloquium applications is November 15, 2013.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Omohundro Institute Conference Program Available

Rowlandson, A Merchant's Office, 1789; Yale Center for British Art
The nineteenth annual meeting of the Omohundro Institute for Early American History and Culture (OIEAHC) will take place this week, June 13-15, at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Md. The general theme of the meeting is "Inland Circuits and Oceanic Connections." The program, which contains several sessions of interest for business and economic historians, is available on-line at the Institute's conference website. Sessions of note include
Opening Plenary: "An Economic Interpretation of the Constitution after One Hundred Years: A Roundtable on Charles Beard," chaired by Richard Bernstein
Session 5: "Material Cultures of Exchange in Eighteenth-Century America," which includes a paper by Caitlin Rosenthal and commentary by Cathy Matson
Session 9: "Planters and Plantation Economies in the Eighteenth-Century Americas"
Session 11: "Commerce and Community: Circuits of Trade and Migration between North America and the Caribbean during the Long Eighteenth Century"
Session 13: "Jamaica and the Wider World: Trade, Gender, and the Law"
Session 19: "Mid-Atlantic, Mediterranean, Caribbean: Merchant Networks circa 1700-1830"
    Those interested in this period of American (and, more broadly, Atlantic) history might wish to consult the Institute's call for papers for the 2014 meeting, which will be held in Halifax, Nova Scotia, next June 12–14. The theme of that meeting will be "The Consequences of War."

Monday, June 10, 2013

Tracking Down Oral Histories on Regulation

At Duke University, history professor Ed Balleisen, who is director of the "Rethinking Regulation" program there, is leading a project to create an online gateway to regulatory oral histories—oral histories with regulators, the regulated, or political actors who were instrumental in creating or changing regulatory agencies or frameworks. As part of the project, work is underway to catalog and tag the most relevant oral histories to make them more accessible. Understanding what interviews have been conducted also will highlight the work that remains to be done. The project organizers have put out a request for information:
We have identified several caches, such as those at the SEC Historical Society and the Columbia Center for Oral History (for example, its FCC project), but we hope to draw on the knowledge of . . . readers to target individual interviews or other rich collections of oral histories regarding regulatory agencies, whether in the U.S. or elsewhere, at any level of government. While we're especially interested in creating an extant database of digitally accessible oral histories, do also let us know if you're aware of relevant oral histories that remain in analog without a digital transcript.
Please e-mail any tips, leads, or general thoughts on the project to william.goldsmith@duke.edu.

Friday, June 7, 2013

CFP: APEBH 2014

The 2014 Asia Pacific Economic and Business History Conference (APEBH) will be held at the University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand, on February 13-15, 2014. The APEBH meeting is held in collaboration with the Economic History Society of Australia and New Zealand. The theme of the conference, which is being organized with the cooperation of the Waikato Management School, is "Economic Consequences of War and Conflict." As described in the call for papers,
Wars are expensive (in money and other resources), destructive (of capital and human capital), and disruptive (of trade, resource availability, labour management). Large wars constitute severe shocks to the economies of parti­cipating countries. Notwithstanding some positive aspects of short-term stimulation and long-term destruc­tion and rebuilding, war generally impedes economic development and undermines prosperity. . . . What are the lessons from comparative approa­ches to analysing such periods of war, conflict, hardship and opportunity?
The organizers welcome proposals for contributions on other topics in economic, social, and business history as well, but they are particularly interested in those focusing on the Asia-Pacific region and papers that provide an international comparative perspective.
    Please see the complete call for papers for submission details and a fuller discussion of the conference theme. The deadline for proposals is November 30, 2013.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

EHA 2013 Meeting Registration Now Open; Draft Program Available

The next annual meeting of the Economic History Association (EHA) will take place on September 21-22, 2013, in Washington, D.C. The theme of this year's meeting is "Global Perspectives."
     The meeting's registration system is now open at http://www.eh.net/eha/event-registration and may be used until August 15. Registration may also be conducted via regular mail or e-mail.
    The draft program has also been posted; links to abstracts and papers will be posted in August and September.
     For more information about the meeting, including details about travel and lodging arrangements, please consult the EHA meeting website. Questions should be addressed to the EHA meeting coordinator, Jari Eloranta, at elorantaj@appstate.edu.

Monday, June 3, 2013

More on the History of Capitalism

Pullmans Palace Car Company New York Stock Certificate no. 16921, Pullman Company Archives, Newberry Library
Most readers, at least those in the U.S., will be familiar with the April 6 New York Times article on the resurgence of courses on the history of capitalism in American colleges and universities ("In History Departments, It's Up with Capitalism").  In addition to Stephen Mihm and Bethany Moreton of the University of Georgia, whose photo was featured, the article mentioned prominently Jonathan Levy (Princeton University), Louis Hyman (Cornell University), Sven Beckert (Harvard University), Julia Ott (The New School), and Seth Rockman (Brown University).  For a convenient short bibliography and links to books mentioned, readers might check the Association of American University Presses (AAUP) website blog post related to the NYT article.
     In addition to the NYT coverage, NPR's "On Point" for April 10 featured an interview with Julia Ott and Louis Hyman, "A Second Look at Capitalism," to which readers can listen on the NPR site. Professor Hyman is also directing a "History of Capitalism Summer Camp" at Cornell University for 10 days this July, designed as a "boot camp" "on economic methods for historians."
     In other activity, a conference, "Capitalizing on Finance: New Directions on the History of Capitalism," organized by Stephen Mihm and Julia Ott, met on April 12-13 at the Huntington Library. And, in addition to the several programs mentioned in the NYT article, the Newberry Library runs a Seminar on the History of Capitalism, organized by Joshua Salzmann and Jeffrey Sklansky and co-sponsored by the history departments of Northeastern Illinois University and the University of Illinois at Chicago.