Editorial Aims and Scope

The Journal of Historical Political Economy (JHPE) publishes cutting edge work in political economy (or how political institutions, the political environment, and the economic system interact and influence each other) from an historical perspective. The journal serves a latent community that exists mostly in the Political Science and Economics communities. In recent years, a larger and larger group of political scientists have been doing quantitative-historical work that involves political economy. Over the same timespan, in Economics, economic historians have increasingly focused on political-economy topics and taken seriously the “politics” in that research. Given the boundaries that typically exist across academic disciplines, these two groups of scholars rarely talk to one another or read each other’s work. The Journal of Historical Political Economy (JHPE) will actively work to get the two groups in dialogue.

The journal therefore is interdisciplinary, and focuses mostly on reaching out to Political Scientists and Economists whose work focuses on historical political economy. But scholars in related fields, like Sociology, Law, Business, History, and Public Policy, also work on political-economy topics and would naturally be interested in the journal as well. The Journal of Historical Political Economy (JHPE) serves as the focal point for the best research in these areas, work that is now being published in disparate journals in different disciplines.

“Historical Political Economy” can mean different things, and thus the journal is open to a broad set of approaches and studies. Examples include:

  • taking topics usually covered by economic historians – like the evolution of economies, market rules, and economic thought – and adding in political institutions to provide a “fuller” account.
  • grounding political-economic theory and empirics in an accurate historical context, and seeking causality in the use of data or theoretical predictions from the formal study of historical institutions or behavior.
  • studying questions of modern political economy using historical data, to assess whether contemporary theories are generalizable across time.