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History research

History research at Birkbeck is strongly interdisciplinary. Our collective expertise in ancient history, medieval, early modern, and modern and contemporary history spans the whole of the human past from pre-history to the late twentieth century. We collaborate across disciplines, areas and periods to push the conceptual boundaries that have long ordered the study of the past. We have a shared interest in approaches, methods, and theories straddling specialisms and disciplines, which we address in research strands, sustained by projects and research centres.

We have long been recognised as a centre of excellence and we pride ourselves on our inclusivity. We publish in 23 languages. Our research is driven by our commitment to engaging diverse audiences and publics, and together we see the study of the past as crucial for making a difference in the world.

Birkbeck was ranked in the top eight universities in the UK for its History, Classics and Archaeology research in the 2021 Research Excellence Framework.


Key Research Centres

Affiliated and external research centres

Research projects

We have a vibrant culture of organising and leading medium and large team-research projects, including postdocs and PhDs. Here is a selection of our current and recent team projects.

In addition to the projects prominently highlighted, we also have past and current projects without a digital presence, including: CBT in Britain: The State, Welfare and the Individual since 1948; Connecting Three Worlds: Socialism, Medicine and Global Health after World War II; and Making and Remaking the Jewish East End: Space, Language and Time.