Professor Bruce Campbell FBA
Professor of Medieval Economic History, The Queen's University of Belfast
"The Great Transition: Climate, Disease and Society in the 13th and 14th Centuries" »
Across the Old World the late-thirteenth and fourteenth centuries witnessed profound and sometimes abrupt changes in the trajectory of established historical trends, as the long era of economic efflorescence which had characterised Latin Christendom and the agrarian empires of eastern and south-eastern Asia since at least the late eleventh century finally drew to an end. Eventually, a set of new socio-economic equilibriums emerged. A combination of environmental and human processes were involved in this 'Great Transition', whose full ecological and geographical dimensions are only now coming to light thanks to detailed scientific research into past climates, application of aDNA analysis to the diagnosis of plague and decoding of the Yersinia pestis genome, and emergence of comparative global history as a significant field of scholarly enquiry.
Professor Sir E.A. Wrigley (University of Cambridge).
Interviewed by Professor Tim Guinnane (Yale University) on behalf of the Cliometrics Society.
Professor Sir E.A. Wrigley was interviewed at his home in Cambridge in May 2010 by Professor Tim Guinnane (Yale):
This interview complements the more biographical interview by Alan Macfarlane in 2007 »
Professor Osamu Saito (Hitotsubashi University, Cambridge Group).
"All poor, but no paupers: a Japanese perspective on the Great Divergence" »
Ken Pomeranz’s The Great Divergence (2000), based mainly on Chinese evidence, argued that in the early modern period, the Asian standard of living was on a par with that of Europe and that market growth in East Asia was comparable to that in western Europe. The book has stimulated a major debate amongst economic historians and much progress has recently been made in cross-cultural comparisons of real wages. However, real differences between East and West cannot be properly understood unless household income, not just real wages, and income inequality, not just per-capita income, are compared; and due attention should be given, not only to product markets, but to factor markets as well. This lecture series examines these issues on the empirical basis of what Japan’s economic history can offer. The findings are not consistent with either Pomeranz’s account of East-West differences in living standards or with those presented in Bob Allen’s recent book.
Professor Nick Crafts (University of Warwick)
“From the 18th to the 21st Century: a Perspective on 250 Years of Economic Growth” »
These lectures consider the evolution of the performance of the British economy over the long run taking the view that 'history matters' but so do the microeconomic foundations of growth. Starting with the Industrial Revolution, the growth record of the British economy is re-examined and key controversies are re-appraised. The objective is to provide a coherent account of British relative economic decline which emphasizes the interactions between institutions and policy choices in the context of historical constraints. The argument is tested by seeking also to explain the apparent end of relative decline recently.