News and Events


Dr Gourvish’s book, Dolphin Square: the History of a Unique Building, has been published by Bloomsbury.

According to the publishers, ‘Blending social history with pioneering architecture and business analysis, Dolphin Square provides a detailed history of the London landmark and its antecedents. Dolphin Square was and is no ordinary block of flats. Built on a massive scale to a high density in the mid-1930s, it was a pioneering example of concrete design, and when completed was the largest single residential building in Europe. The book begins with the antecedents of the seven-acre site, which was first occupied by the workshops of Thomas Cubitt, when he developed Pimlico and Belgravia. Conceived as a speculative housing project and later catering for MPs, peers and entertainers required to work in London, this book tells the story of the Dolphin Square project and also captures what it has been like to live in the square for figures including Ellen Wilkinson, Alistair Darling, William Hague, Mo Mowlam, Sir David Steel, Christine Keeler, Sid James, Barbara Windsor and Princess Anne. The book charts the Square's changing ownership and eventual creation of the Dolphin Square Trust, which managed the flats on a non-profit-making basis for 40 years. Dolphin Square breaks new ground in providing a detailed examination of a major example of urban property speculation and management.

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Dr Gourvish has been awarded an ISA Senior Fellowship at the University of Bologna. He will work with Professor Francesca Fauri, Jean Monnet Chair in European economic history. The fellowship runs from 22 April to 22 June 2014.



Professor Julio Tascón-Fernández from University of Oviedo is a Unit visitor from May 2013. As Franklin Institute-University of Alcalá Researcher and Collaborator (PR) he is working on competitive business in both sides of the Atlantic Ocean: US and Spain, 1953-2013, its main project. He is very keen on US FDI broadly scattered all over the Southern European countries, especially concerning PIGS, and on the role played by State institutions in supporting abroad best profitability for affiliates having a US parent company.  He is currently carrying out research for a database about firms in southern Europe.


Professor José Ortiz-Villajos from Complutense University is a Unit visitor. He is working on the determinants of entrepreneurship in historical perspective, with particular reference to Spain and the UK. The project involves the construction of a database of entrepreneurs, isolating indicators of success, and variables imputed to contribute to success.

Professor Shigehiro Nishimura form Kansai University is a visitor in the Unit. He will be with us until September 2012. Shigehiro is researching the evolution of corporate patent management in Japan, Europe and the United States. He has contributed a paper to the Economic History Department’s Working Paper series: 

  • Nº 168: The rise of the patent department: A case study of Westinghouse Electric and Manufacturing Company