Economic History

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A Lectureship in Economic History was instituted in 1906. The first appointee, in 1908, was George Unwin (1870-1925), who in 1910 moved to Manchester University to become the United Kingdom's first Professor of Economic History. It was not until 1956 that a chair of Economic History was established at Edinburgh University, the first holder being Alexander John Youngson (1918-2004).

The Department of Economic History was transferred from the Faculty of Arts to the newly founded Faculty of Social Sciences in 1963. In 1965 it expanded to become the Department of Economic and Social History.

Since major restructuring of Edinburgh University in 2002, Economic and Social History have been taught with the School of History, Classics and Archaelogy of the College of Humanities and Social Science.

Professors of Economic History

In 2006, the post was renamed the Chair of Economic and Social History. Previously, a Personal Chair of Economic and Social History had been held by Robert J. Morris from 1992 to 2009. Personal Chairs of Social History were also held by Michael Walter Flinn (1968-1978), Rosalind Mary Mitchison (1981-1986), and Roger J. Davidson (2002 - ).

Professors of Economic and Social History


  • Alexander Falconer Giles, 'The Faculty of Arts', in A. Logan Turner (ed.), History of the University of Edinburgh 1883-1933 (Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press, 1933), pp. 164-238.
  • University Calendar