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Department of Economic History

How to contact us


Economic History Department
London School of Economics and Political Science
Houghton Street


We are located in Sardinia House 


Head of Department
Professor Albrecht Ritschl

Departmental Manager

Linda Sampson
Tel: +44 (0)20 7955 7084


MSc Programmes Manager
Tracy Keefe
Tel: +44 (0)20 7955 7860


Undergraduate Administrator
Helena Ivins
Tel: +44 (0)20 7955 7860


Undergraduate Admissions Enquiries
+44 (0)20 7955 7125


PhD Administrator
Loraine Long
Tel: +44 (0)20 7955 7046


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A version of Matteo Ricci's world map, created in China in 1602.

The Department of Economic History is home to a huge breadth and depth of knowledge and expertise ranging from the medieval period to the current century and covering every major world economy. It is one of the largest specialist departments in the country, with 25 full- and part-time time teachers, as well as visiting academics and researchers.
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National Student Survey Results 2015

The Economic History department has performed very well in the 2015 National Student Survey. Overall student satisfaction was rated at 100%, making us the LSE’s highest rated department in this category. 95% of our students rated satisfaction with teaching. Satisfaction with Academic Support and Feedback and Assessment were rated 87% and 85% respectively. 

We are particularly pleased that our scores in all but one of the categories showed an upward trend on last year’s, and extend our thanks to all faculty, teachers and support staff who have contributed to this excellent result.  


Congratulations to our students recently awarded their PhDs. Nuno Palma passed his PhD viva in November, and Garrick Hileman and Michael Aldous  passed their vivas in October. 

The Economic History of Firms and Industries Seminar is a new forum for papers exploring unsolved mysteries within the economic history of firms, industries and the institutions that shaped them. The seminar series endeavours to include analytical, comparative and critical perspectives from a wide range of topics, methods, countries, continents and historical eras.  


"Too much maths, too little history: The problem of Economics" 
Tuesday 24th November, 7-8.30pm
Sheikh Zayed Theatre, LSE

A panel of speakers including Lord Robert Skidelsky, Dr. Ha-Joon Chang, Professors Jörn-Steffen Pischke and Francesco Caselli took part in a debate aiming to  critically re-evaluate the relationship between Economics and Economic History, and whether the art of Economics is losing out to the science. The debate was chaired by Professor James Foreman-Peck.

You can see photos from the event on the department's facebook page.


LSE Economic History Society Review 2014-5

We are pleased to announce the publication of the LSE Economic History Review 2014-5, a journal created by the LSESU Economic History Society. This student-initiated publication is edited by Shem Ng and Jay Pan, with the support of Professor Max Schulze and Dr Chris Minns.

The editors write, 'Engaging with the past is fundamental to understanding the present whilst good historical writing appreciates the nuances of time and place. The LSE Economic History Review aims to combine both these traits by providing a platform to present outstanding scholarship of Social and Economic History written by current LSE Students. 

'The journal is an annual publication run by the committee of the LSESU Economic History Society. The LSE is not responsible for its contents.'

The winning submission by Economic History undergraduate Bethany Bloomer compares the gender neutrality of the business cycle in London and Blackburn during the interwar period. Other essays focus on the failure of the New Deal, sources of agricultural growth in Japan and the legacy of colonialism in West Africa. 


New first year EH core course begins in 2015-16 academic year.

The Preindustrial Economy of Europe,  taught by Professor Oliver Volckart,  is a new compulsory course for first year BSc Economic history students. The course surveys long-term processes of growth and development in late medieval and early modern Europe (fourteenth to eighteenth centuries). It focuses on the transition from a hierarchical society of estates or corporate orders to a market society based on legal equality. 

REF 2014

The results of the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF) were announced on Wednesday 18 December 2014. Taking into account the proportion of its eligible staff submitted for assessment, LSE History (Economic History and International History) was ranked sixth out of 83 submissions to the REF History panel for the percentage of its research outputs rated 'world leading '(4*) or 'internationally excellent' (3*) and ninth for its submission as a whole. On the basis of the combination of quality of publications and number of staff submitted, a measure of research power, LSE History ranks 4th in the UK

Doing A levels and interested in studying Economic History? For a  comprehensive guide to our undergraduate programmes, including course information and how to apply, click on the link below.

  • BSc Economic History Programmes

For a comprehensive guide to our five Master's programmes, including course information and how to apply, click on the link below. 

Doctoral Research at the Department of Economic History

As one of the largest Economic History departments in the world we offer unusually broad teaching and research expertise to our doctoral students. We invite applications from those wishing to carry out research within the wide spectrum of economic history.

Latin America, Economic Imperialism and the State: the political economy of the external connection since Independence (with C. Abel, eds.), (London 2015) 
Lewis -ArgRlys
British Railways in Argentina, 1857-1914: a case study of foreign investment (London 2015).

British Economic Growth, 1270–1870

Authors: Stephen Broadberry, Bruce Campbell, Alexander Klein, Mark Overton, Bas van Leeuwen

A definitive new account of Britain's economic evolution from medieval backwater to global economy. The authors reconstruct Britain's national accounts for the first time right back into the thirteenth century showing what really happened quantitatively from the middle ages up until the Industrial Revolution.