Home » Departments and Centres » History and Civilization » Research & Teaching » Seminars » 2018-2019 2nd term » Business, Finance and the Making of Europe in the Twentieth Century

Business, Finance and the Making of Europe in the Twentieth Century

Research Seminar

Organised by Prof Youssef Cassis and Dr Grace Ballor (Max Weber Fellow)
Registration code: HEC-RS-BUSFIN-18
Block Seminar: 4-6 March 2019 (Sala Belvedere, Villa Schifanoia) 

Admin. Assistant: Miriam Curci


Seminar Description

This Research Seminar, which will be structured as a three-day block seminar, will reflect on the role of business and finance in Europe’s history during the twentieth century. Business and finance will be understood in a broad sense, including their political and social dimensions. Their role will be examined at three interconnected levels. The first is the way business and finance shaped Europe’s economic development during the second and third industrial revolutions, as well as their strength and weaknesses in comparison with other countries, in particular the United States and Japan. The second is the extent to which one can talk of a European model of business and financial organisation, despite the persistence of national characteristics. And the third is the contribution of business and financial interests to the project of European integration. 


4 March

9:30-11:15: Business and Finance in Europe in the Twentieth Century: An Overview
Youssef Cassis (EUI)

  • Youssef Cassis, Big Business. The European Experience in the Twentieth Century (Oxford, Oxford University Press, 1997), Part I.
  • Youssef Cassis, ‘Europe’s Financial Capitals since the Early Twentieth Century’, unpublished paper.

11:30-13:15:  Not anymore boring? European bankers' soul searching in the troubled 1970s
Giuseppe Telesca (Richmond, The International American University in London)

  • Edoardo Altamura, European Banks and the Rise of International Finance (London, Routledge, 2017), chapter 2.

14:30-16:15: Milieux économiques, entreprises et premiers schémas d’organisation économique dans l’Europe des années 1920
Eric Bussière (Paris IV-Sorbonne and Fernand Braudel Fellow, EUI)

  • Eric Bussière, ‘Premiers schémas européens et économie internationale durant l’entre -deux guerres’, in Relations internationales, 123, 2005.
  • Wolfram Kaiser and Johan Schot, Writing the rules for Europe.  Experts, cartels and international Organizations (London, Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), Chapter 2.


5 March

9:30-11:15: Family Capitalism
Andrea Colli (Bocconi University)

  • Paloma Fernandez and Andrea Colli, ‘Global, but proudly Local. Family Business in Europe’, in Franco Amatori and Youssef Cassis (eds.), In Search of European Capitalism (Oxford, Oxford University Press, forthcoming).
  • Andrea Colli, ‘Europe’s Difference and Comparative History: Searching for European Capitalism’, in Paolo Di Martino, Andrew Popp and Peter Scott (eds.), People, Places and Business Culture. Essays in Honour of Francesca Carnevali (Woodbridge, Boydell Press, 2017), pp.201-220.

11:30-13:15: From Customs Union to Single Market: Big Business and European Integration
Grace Ballor (Max Weber Fellow, EUI)

  • European Commission, ‘Treaty of Rome’, Preamble and Part I.
  • European Commission, “Completing the Internal Market: White Paper from the European Commission to the European Council,” Milan, 28-29 June, 1985. COM 85 (310) Final, pp. 1-55.
  • Ivan Berend, The History of European Integration: A New Perspective. (London: Routledge, 2016), Chapters 4 & 5.

14:30-16:15: Does one market need one money? Finance and the making of EMU, 1957-1992
Emmanuel Mourlon-Druol (University of Glasgow)

  • Daniel Gros, One Market One Money: A Mistaken Argument (post factum)
  • Éric Monnet, Controlling Credit: Central Banking and the Planned Economy in Postwar France, 1948-1973 (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018), Chapter 7.


6 March

9:30-11:15: The Role of the European Commission in the Development of European Business Associations since the 1960s
Hélène Michel (University of Strasbourg and Visiting Fellow, EUI)

  • Hélène Michel and Guillaume Courty, ‘Interest groups and lobbyists in the European political space: the permanent Eurocrats’, in Didier Georgakakis and Jay Rowell (eds.), The Field of Eurocracy: Mapping EU actors and professionals (London, Palgrave Macmillan, 2013), pp. 166-187.
  • Sylvain Laurens, Lobbyists and bureaucrats in Brussels. Capitalism's brokers (London, Routledge, 2018), chapters 1 and 2.

11:30-13:15: The Business of Détente in Cold War Europe
Angela Romano (EUI)

  • Hubert ‘Bonin, Business interests versus geopolitics: The case of the Siberian pipeline in the 1980s’, Business History, 49,2 (2017), pp. 235-254.
  • Angela Romano, ‘The UK Policy Towards Socialist Countries in the 1970s: Trade as a Cornerstone of Détente’, in Effie Pedaliu, John Fisher, and Richard Smith (eds.), The Foreign Office, Commerce and Foreign Policy in the Twentieth Century (London, Palgrave, 2016), vol. 2, pp. 465–485.

14:30-16:15: A European Business Identity?
Youssef Cassis and Grace Ballor

  • Harm Schröter (ed.), The European Enterprise: historical investigation into a future species (Berlin/London, Springer, 2007), Introduction.
  • Youssef Cassis, ‘Globalisation, Entreprises et identité européenne’, Entreprises et Histoire, 33 (2003), pp. 5-11.



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