International Economic History Association



Newsletter July 2003


Dear colleague,

This letter is to inform you about the decisions taken by the Executive Committee of the IEHA during its meeting in Paris on May 23-24, 2003.

Firstly, the executive committee reviewed the 13th World Economic History Congress in Buenos Aires in 2002. It congratulated our now honorary president Roberto Cortes Conde with its academic and financial success. A motion was moved by acclamation in effect to use the Buenos Aires surplus (approximately US$ 22,000) to establish a perpetual fund for travel grants for scholars from developing countries and transition economies in financial need. Future organizers are expected to try to raise additional funds, and will be recommended grants for the 2006 Congress in Helsinki. The fund will be named after Roberto Cortes to add possible surpluses of the congress to the Roberto Cortes Conde Fund.

Secondly, the preparations for the 14th Economic History World Congress in Helsinki in 2006 were discussed. The local organizing committee is in full swing. Riitta Hjerppe has drafted a time schedule and budget, she has begun to raise funds for the congress, and has appointed a secretary to the local organizing committee, Mrs. Andrea Lorenz-Wende, who will be responsible for all practical matters relating to the congress organization. The date for the congress is set at 21-25 August 2006. The organizers have suggested a registration fee of 200 Euros, but a final determination will not be made this year. A first brochure is published in the spring of 2004. As is required by the statutes a letter of understanding will be drafted between the local organizing committee and the IEHA, to specify both parties' responsibilities in organizing the congress.

Thirdly, the Executive Committee discussed the session proposals that were submitted in reply to the first call for session proposals. A total of 61 proposals was received, 46 of which were accepted for inclusion in the congress program. The details of these proposals will be available shortly on the congress webpage. A second call for session proposals will be issued in the Spring of 2004. The deadline for submission of new proposals will be January 31th 2005.

Fourthly, the executive committee invites the member organizations of the IEHA to nominate candidates for the executive committee. In August 2006, at least six seats on the Committee will become vacant. In addition the position of Secretary General will become vacant. Therefore the IEHA is looking for:

a SECRETARY GENERAL for (in principle) two terms. Each member organization is allowed to nominate one person under the rules adopted in Buenos Aires.

a SITTING MEMBER for (in principle) two terms; eight. Each member organization is according to the new rules allowed to nominee one person.

We would like to invite your organization to nominate two persons, not necessarily persons from your own country or organization: one for the executive committee and one for the Secretary General position. Candidates for the general secretary may come from within or outside the present executive committee. Nominations should be sent to the IEHA Office before October 30st, 2004. Please include relevant information for the persons that you wish to nominate. This should include the position they hold in their respective countries, a list of published books and articles, and information about governing positions held within their university or other institutions.

We would like to add that, according to the new statutes, the executive committee should reflect "the diversity of scholars of all member societies and of economic history in its broadest sense". This we interpret also to relate to a more balanced composition of the committee in terms of age groups and sex.

In accordance with the statutes, the executive committee will prepare a slate of endorsed nominees for the available positions from the persons that were nominated by the member organizations. For further details about the nominating procedure and the composition of the current Executive Committee, please check other pages on this website.

Fifthly, the executive committee at some length discussed the issue of the next planning cycle and the selecting of the venue of the 15th Congress. Two reasons were given for changing the current rhythm of one congress every four years; it appears that both for the organization of the congress, and for many participants, a planning cycle of four years is quite long; for many scholars it is, for example, difficult to plan a session three years in advance. Moreover, 2010 is perhaps not a very suitable year for a world economic history congress, as it will coincide with the world history congress of the same year (those congresses have a rhythm of five years: the next one, in 2005, will be held in Sydney). For these reasons it was concluded that the Executive Committee has a clear preference for the 15th Congress to be held in 2009. A committee has been appointed to consider the issue more in detail and think through its consequences for the planning of the activities of the IEHA in the long run.

Finally, I would like to draw your attention to two documents attached to this letter:

Call for host cities As a result of the discussions mentioned the IEHA issues a call for host cities for the 15th Congress to be held in 2009. Please consider the possibility of hosting the congress in your country. The deadline for submission of a proposal to host the congress is October 30st, 2004.

Call for dissertations In 2006 three dissertation prizes (pre-industrial, 19th and 20th century) will be awarded. Enclosed you find a call for submissions of PhD theses for the dissertation sessions. The deadline for submission of dissertations is December 31st, 2004. Please use the call to inform your members about our dissertation competition.

With kind regards,

Jan Luiten van Zanden, Secretary General

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