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Trade

A MiddLab Project

The Price Revolution

The origins of a general trend in Europe of rising prices between 1520 and 1640, labeled the Price Revolution, have been deeply contested by economic historians since the 1920s. The debate is divided between two major camps, stressing the importance of monetary and ‘real’ factors respectively. My paper provides a general overview of the literature since the 1920s. I identify the influence of parallel developments in economic thought on the debate. Further, using the same qualitative primary sources employed by previous works on the topic I construct a novel explanation for these rising prices, avoiding constraints presented by flawed/restricted data.

People

Anil Menon

Professor Paul Monod

 

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In a January 2011 Winter Term Class, “Twenty-First Century Global Challenges,”  21 Middlebury students studied great challenges of our time – including wide-scale poverty, climate change, and the struggle for human rights. They then analyzed how social entrepreneurs – individuals and groups who are developing new ways to attack systematic problems – are taking on these challenges.  For example, Nina Cameron ’12 studied how the Global Network is trying to reduce the prevalence of neglected tropical diseases; Erin Kelly ’13 studied how the University of the Peopleis providing tuition-free higher-education throughout the developing world.  The students also spend much of the course developing a vision for a new center for social entrepreneurship based at Middlebury College.  On this MiddLab, we report the ongoing results of this work.

People

Jonathan Isham, Jr.
Professor of Economics

Wahid Ahmed
Catherine Brown
Nina Cameron
Brian Clow
Thomas Crocker
Matthew Engel
Stuart Fram
Allison Grant
Mark Hannah
Paul Hildebrand
Aaron Kelly
Claire McIlvennie
Olivia Noble
Bradley Osborn
Devin Perkins
Hilary Platt
Jeronimo Riefkohl
Martin Sweeney
Rhidaya Trivedi
Kenneth Williams
Nicole Williams

The Ripple Effect in India

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The business model of the food industry, as it stands today, is unsustainable.  To counter these negative trends, organizations like Slow Food International have begun to champion the importance of “quality” for health, the environment, and the art of gastronomy. But what does quality mean and what will be its impact on the global food industry? An analysis of wines produced in France and labeled with the government-sponsored quality certification system, Appelation d’Origine Contrôlée, reveals that an emphasis on quality and geography, rather than brand, makes the food market more monopolistically competitive, more inclusive yet hierarchical.

People

Emily Gullickson
Researcher

Thierry Warin
Sponsor and Associate Professor of Economics

Lynn Owens
Sponsor and Assistant Professor of Sociology

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A MiddLab Project

Reassessing the First Anglo-Dutch War of the Seventeenth Century

Learn more about History at Middlebury College.

At the dawn of Europe’s global age, England and the Dutch Republic clashed in a series of violent naval battles known as the First Anglo-Dutch War (1652-1654). I argue that the First Anglo-Dutch War was the direct result of the calculated political and economic strategies of the English East India Company (EIC).  Through carefully crafted popular marketing campaigns and the consistent, calculated lobbying and infiltration of England’s monarchy and national government, the EIC definitively influenced English foreign policy – a strategy that would establish the foundation for the greatest global empire the world had yet seen.

People

Andrew Van Horn Ruoss
Researcher

Paul Monod
Advisor & A. Barton Hepburn Professor of History

eic

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