Agricultural Risk and the Spread of Religious Communities

New EHES working paper Is the spread of religious communities related to economic risk? Historically, religious communities have often been the only source of support beyond the family. The social support provided by religious communities appears to be a type of informal mutual insurance especially valuable in historical agricultural societies exposed to much economic risk […]

Participative Political Institutions and City Development 800–1800

New EHES working paper Does contemporary economic development have medieval roots?  Fabian Wahl is a PhD studentat University of Hohenheim Numerous studies suggest that the institutional, educational and technical innovations connected with the commercial revolution in the late medieval laid the ground for the later European Industrial Revolution.  However, the late middle ages also saw […]

A Re-interpretation of UK Corporate Law and Corporate Governance before 1914

A new EHES Working paper by James Foreman-Peck and Leslie Hannah  Companies were the principal institution through which investment was channelled into the nineteenth and early twentieth century economy. The close cross-country correlation of company numbers and GDP around 1910 is therefore no surprise (figure 1). In the top right of the figure are the […]

Contracts and cooperation: The relative failure of the Irish dairy industry in the late nineteenth century reconsidered

New EHES working paper Eoin McLaughlin is a Leverhulme Early Career Fellow at University of St. Andrews Ireland was one of the major dairying exporters on the London market in the early nineteenth century but lost its position of pre-eminence to Denmark by the close of the century. The question Henriksen, McLaughlin and Sharp seek to address is why the establishment of […]

The Heavy Plough and the Agricultural Revolution in Medieval Europe.

New EHES working paper Did the heavy plough – as suggested by Lynn White Jr. and many others – lead to economic development during the Middle Ages? This question is investigated in a new EHES working paper by Andersen, Jensen and Skovsgaard, University of Southern Denmark. Fig 1:  (a) the old plough, the ard, and (b) the heavy […]

Origins of Political Change—The Case of Late Medieval Guild Revolts

New EHES working paper Fabian Wahl is a PhD student at the Universityof Hohenheim In the last decades there has been an increasing interest in the role of institutional innovations in the late medieval and early modern period for the “Rise of the West” and the “Great Divergence” between the Western countries and the rest of […]

Effects of Agricultural Productivity Shocks on Female Labor Supply: Evidence from the Boll Weevil Plague in the US South

New EHES working paper Manifested in historical accounts, songs, and family tales, the boll weevil (Anthonomus grandis), an approximately one-fourth inch long beetle with a very long snout, is considered as the most well-known agricultural pest in the American South.  Anthonomus grandis Arriving near Brownsville, Texas, from Mexico in 1892, the boll weevil started to […]