RUB » Institute of History » Environmental History » Environmental History

General Information

We are doing research on Early Modern History and on aspects of Environmental History (natural hazards and colonial history).

Research is concentrated on the rather new field of the history of security: A project funded by the DFG (Taming of Risk in premodern times) has touched upon the danger of major city conflagrations between Early modern times and Modernity. Historical aspects of politics, economics, art, charity, government/policy are combined when analyzing the development of security regimes. A database of ca. 8200 German and Austrian big city fires since the middle Ages has been established.
We did research on the Northern European slave chests (Sklavenkassen) which were an institutional response to the continuous piracy problem in the Mediterranean world: they were the institutional model for the later established fire insurances in Northern Europe.

A broad range of other topics of Early Modern History are treated (History of Political Theory, machiavellism, the Holy Roman Empire, communication history, Reformation and comparative history of confessions, history of the French Wars of religion, Early Modern Italy, Germany, France, the Netherlands.