Economic history (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Maria Luisa Ferrari
Maria Luisa Ferrari
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
primo semestre (lauree) dal Sep 28, 2020 al Dec 23, 2020.

Lesson timetable

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Learning outcomes

The course intends to provide the fundamental elements required for an understanding of the international economic relationships which developed in the Modern and Contemporary Age. After an outline of the historical conditions and the motives underlying the expansion of Europe, the course investigates forms of organisation of production, trade and circulation of the characteristic goods from the different areas (Europe, America, Asia, Africa) in the 15th-20th centuries with particular emphasis on the problem of the structure of interregional and intercontinental trade routes. The course aims to provide a general knowledge of structural and institutional evolution of European economy since the early modern age to the present. Students must demonstrate that they have understood the structures of Economic history, that they are able to correctly place problems and events, and that they know the most relevant themes of the economic debate.


- Agriculture in pre-industrial age.
- Industry and Production from 16th to 18th centuries
- European expansion: Historical conditions and economic reasons.
- Merchants and trade from 16th to 18th centuries: goods, traffic routes, financial and commercial organization.
- Business tools used by business people in pre-industrial age.
- The features of production and commerce in the nineteenth century.
- International trade and European domination (1875-1914).
- The international trade at the end of liberal capitalism.
- The new layout of international economy (1939-1953): Bretton Woods system and its transformation.
- Industry, Production and Commerce in the second half of the twentieth century
- The evolution of the means of transport and the modes of communication.
- The evolution of sales networks.
- The globalization: industry, finance, trade.

Teaching materials will be available online at the elearning course section.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
Mauro Carboni L'ascesa economica dell'Europa, 1450-1750 Il Mulino 2016
Larry Neal e Rondo Cameron Storia economica del mondo. Dalla preistoria ad oggi Il Mulino (Bologna) 2016 capitoli VII-XVI

Assessment methods and criteria

The final exam will be an interview aiming at testing the students' overall knowledge by means of oral questions related to the required readings.