International Economic History Association



Newsletter October 2006

Dear colleagues,

first of all, I am happy to inform you that we have had a very successful
World Economic History Congress in Helsinki in August 2006-most of you know that already from participating. I would like to thank the organizing committee once again for the excellent job they did. Every one of the 1400 participants from 65 countries who attended the Congress will agree on that, I trust. Over 900 papers were presented and discussed in 123 sessions.
Full details on the Congress are available on the Congress' web site: The papers will remain there for some time (unless somebody asks for removal), as they represent an impressive overview over the state of research in our discipline, and a rich source to look up particular information.

In the opening session, Professor Kenneth Sokoloff presented a speech prepared by Professor Robert Fogel, who had cancelled for personal reasons. The lecture, which was titled "Toward an Era of Longevity and Wealth", was followed by a talk by the second keynote speaker, Dr. Sikka Hämäläinen. She gave a firsthand account of the Euro's implementation and the political and financial issues, which evolved around it. At the closing session of the Congress the prizes of the dissertation competition were awarded to the following scholars:

  • Medieval and early-modern period: Tine de Moor (Ph.D. from Ghent University, Belgium). ˇ
  • Long 19th-century period: Gerhard Kling (Ph.D. from Tuebingen University, Germany). ˇ
  • 20th-century period: Mária Del Mar Rubio Varas (Ph.D. from London School of Economics, UK).

Furthermore, I would like to give you an update of the changes in the organization of the IEHA. In Helsinki, on August 24th the General Assembly of the IEHA was held. The main topics of the meeting were a revision of the Statutes, proposed by the Executive Committee, the election of new members of the Executive Committee, the reports of the president on the organization of the 2006 congress, of the treasurer and of the secretary general, as well as the organization of the XVth World Economic History Congress 2009.

As far as the statutes were concerned, the EC proposed a change from a cycle of four years to a flexible three or four year cycle as a congress in 2010 would coincide with the conference of the International History Association in Amsterdam that year. Also a three year cycle would take account of the new tendency of shorter planning horizons. The General Assembly approved the revised Statutes. As for the Executive Committee, the following members stepped down after many years of dedicated service to the IEHA: Osamu Saito, Patrick Fridenson, Sevket Pamuk, Jacob Metzer, Jacek Kochanowicz, Tamas Szmrecsányi and Leonid Borodkin. Both at the General Assembly and at the closing session of the Congress the vice president expressed her deep gratitude on behalf of the IEHA for the work they had done for the organization. The president, who unfortunately could not attend the EC meetings, sent his greetings to Jan Luiten van Zanden to thank him warmly for his work as secretary general during the previous two terms. Because of his outstanding services, the title of honorary president is conferred to Richard Sutch, who retired from the IEHA presidency. Richard has been in the EC for four terms, served as the president of the IEHA for one term and most importantly was the chair and chief motivator of the reform committee.

As for the new Executive Committee, the General Assembly elected the following members:

  • Richard Sutch, honorary president
  • Riitta Hjerppe, president
  • Jan Luiten van Zanden, vice president
  • Chris Lloyd, treasurer (second term)
  • Jörg Baten, secretary general (first term)
  • Carlos Marichal (second term)
  • Om Prakash (second term)
  • Naomi Lamoreaux (second term)
  • Gianni Toniolo (second term)
  • Rolf Walter (second term)
  • Forrest Capie (second term)
  • Beverly Lemire (first term)
  • Phillipe Minard (first term)
  • Yuri Petrov (first term)
  • Leandro Prados de la Escosura (first term)
  • Kaoru Sugihara (first term)
  • Grietjie Verhoef (first term)
  • Luis Bértola (first term)
  • Bozhong Li (first term)

In the next newsletter, I plan to report short biographies of the previous and current EC members.

As we have moved the secretariat to the University of Tuebingen, the internet address of the IEHA is now

The General Assembly was also very pleased to approve the membership appliance of the Economic History Society of Southern Africa, the European Historical Economics Society, the International Social History Association, the German Association for Business History, and of the Austrian Economic and Social Historians. Also, the Business History Conference is now a full member of the IEHA.

The president gave a brief report on the organization of the 2006 Congress. More than 70% of the 1400 participants came from Europe this time, with the largest groups from Finland and the United Kingdom. Most Non-Europeans travelled from the United States to Helsinki. Most of the papers and abstracts will remain online on the Congress web site unless the authors wish otherwise.

The treasurer suggested in his report that the IEHA should discuss about moving the financial seat away from Swiss UBS as it offers only restricted use of its facilities to foreigners. This might imply moving the official seat of the IEHA to another country as most banks call for the account holder to be registered under the law of their country. The General Assembly agreed to initiate the process of moving the bank account. Following the report of the secretary general on his work during his second term, the vice president concluded that the secretary general performed very actively and accurately.

Finally, the General Assembly endorsed the decision of the Executive Committee that the XVth World Economic History Congress will take place in Utrecht in 2009. Jan Luiten van Zanden will lead the organizing committee. The first call for session proposals will be send out in November, along with more information about the organization of the next Congress. You can already visit the Congress' web site:

With kind regards,

Joerg Baten, Secretary General

Newsletter Archive

Newsletter November 2009
Newsletter December 2008
Newsletter November 2007
Newsletter October 2006

Newsletter April 2005

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Newsletter July 2003

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