Home > Library > Collections > Subject Guides > Economic History > Specialist resources
Your Academic Support Librarian 

Paul Horsler

Telephone: 020 7955 6354

Email: p.n.horsler@lse.ac.uk|


Specialist resources

Online resources

The Library has many online resources relating to Economic History.  Below are a few collections of particular note: 

  • Global Commodities documents the trade in 15 major commodities around the world from c1500 to the present day.
  • Empire Online is a collection of primary source materials including diaries and travel logs relating to Empire Studies
  • Mass Observation Online provides a unique insight into life in Britain between 1937 and 1950
  • Historic Annual Reports is a database comprising over 150 years worth of annual reports from North American companies
  • Mergent Annual Reports holds similarities with Historic Annual Reports, with a broader international scope.

LSE Library has a Delicious account| with some suggestions of recommended, free online resources. There is an Economic History| tag alongside other tags that may have particular relevance to your research area. 

Data Library

The Data Library| contains a wide range of data and statistics from across the globe.  Access is usually available online or in print.  In some cases it is only available from specific machines in the Library itself whilst other data is held offline and needs to be required from the Data Library.  The Moodle course called the Library Companion for Data Users| provides a good introduction to our resources and will help you locate material. 

Online and offline data provided by the Data Library can only be used by current LSE staff and students in pursuit of LSE related academic research.  It cannot be used for commercial purposes.

Two of the most commonly used datasets within Economic History are shown below:

  • Global Financial Data provides access to long-term historic financial and economic data with some series going back to the 1200s
  • Cross National Time Series provides data on 194 economic, poltiical and demographic variables since 1815.

The Data Library team| is also available to assist with any queries you may have about finiding data or using individual resources.  The level of support depends on our knowledge of the resource.

Current Research

LSE Research Online is a collection of research produced by LSE staff.  It often contains contents which is full text and freely available.  Recently added items include:


Two major collections of open access repositories around the world are OpenDOAR| and OAIster|


Theses are a valuable resource for researchers as they  provide an overview of previous research and provide access to current edge research.

LSE PhD Theses are indexed on Library Search|.  Carry out a search and then limit to 'Dissertations, Academic'.  You can identify theses from Economic History by typing "Economic History" into the author field.  More recent theses and some older material is available via LSE Theses Online.|


Two heavily used resources for finding mainly doctoral theses are detailed below:

Special collections

The Library has a large collection of microfilm and microfiche.  Items held on this medium include the archives of the Trades Union Congress and the Labour Party.  Further information about this collection can be obtained directly from the Library contact for the Department of Economic History, Paul Horsler.|

Coll ED is a specialist collection of historic trade union material dating from the 19th Century.  This includes material such as the rules of a particular trade union and monthly newsletter. 

Of specific interest to Economic Historians is a collection of books we received from the estate of Professor Epstein.  The books were collected in connection with a project on the role  of technology in the pre-industrial world.  Emphasis is on the history of technology in Europe but there is additional material on non-European topics and on the development of technology generally.  Much of the material is related to specific branches of interest such as building, ship construction, textiles, glass and metal working.