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Showing posts from June, 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 .

“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 Michig

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 .

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 ra

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, a

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 con

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 Colloqu

Omohundro Institute Conference Program Available

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 d

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


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, confli

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 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 .

More on the History of Capitalism

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