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International Research Award in Global History: Conference in Basel on Taxation and State Finances

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The conference of the laureate of the 2016 International Research Award in Global History took place on December 1-3, 2016, in Basel. Award winner Dr. Vanessa Ogle (University of Pennsylvania) organized the international symposium titled "Global Histories of Taxation and State Finances Since the Late 19th Century".

The conference called on historians and historically-minded sociologists and political scientists with different geographical specializations to engage with the topic of taxation from a wide variety of angles. Taxation has wide-ranging implications for global as well as domestic orders, ranging from budgets and public finances to inequality, the so­cial fabric of societies, and worldwide competition for corporate pro­fits. Since the global financial crisis of 2008 in particular, taxation and the reform of tax systems have become talking points in many parts of the North Atlantic world. This symposium studied the history of these issues. Four panel sessions discussed topics such as the politics of international taxation, post-World War II tax systems, the shift from progressive to neoliberal tax systems, and taxation in colonial empires. Additionally, two public lectures were organized as part of the symposium: "Aristocrats and Taxes: Some Thoughts on the Origins of Inequality" was the topic of Jacob Soll's (University of Southern California) public lecture. Monica Prasad (Northwestern University) held a lecture titled "Running to Stay in Place: Money in American Politics".

The international symposium "Global Histories of Taxation and State Finances Since the Late 19th Century" took place on December 1-3 at the Institute for European Global Studies, Gellertstrasse 27, in Basel. Both public lectures took place at the Kollegiengebäude, Petersplatz 1. The symposium was the conference of the laureate of the 2016 International Research Award in Global History.

The International Research Award in Global History is funded jointly by the Institute for European Global Studies at the University of Basel (Madeleine Herren-Oesch), the Department of History and the Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context" at Heidelberg University (Roland Wenzlhuemer), and the Laureate Research Program in International History at the University of Sydney (Glenda Sluga). It comes with a purse of up to €10,000 to host an international symposium at one of the participating universities.

Dr. Vanessa Ogle, this year's laureate, is Julie and Martin Franklin Assistant Professor of Modern European History at the University of Pennsylvania, USA. Prior to joining Penn's History Department in 2011, she completed a doctorate at Harvard University. In 2013-2014, she was a member at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. Dr. Ogle teaches and writes about the history of modern Europe from an international and global perspective. In her first monograph, she explored the "The Global Transformation of Time, 1870 - 1950". In another book project, "Archipelago Capitalism: The Other International Political Economy, ca. 1870s-1980s", she analyses the formation of a distinctly non-territorial and non-national economic and legal order that was put in place in the postwar decades and that would come to form the basis for today's global economy as it emerged from the 1970s and 1980s.

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