Health Crises 2022

The Economics and History of Health Crises
An Interdisciplinary Workshop

Dates: Thursday 26 & Friday 27 May 2022
Venue: Clifton House, Belfast, Northern Ireland
​Hosts: Centre for Health Research at the Management School (CHARMS) and Centre for Economic History (QUCEH), Queen’s University Belfast

Workshop Programme

Call for Papers
The Covid-19 pandemic has led to a vast expansion in academic research output into health crises. But most of this research is conducted by scholars within their disciplinary silos. Discipline-specific language and publishing norms means we are often unaware of relevant research from colleagues in other fields. The aim of the workshop is to foster dialogue between economists, historians and other social scientists who are conducting disciplinary research into the causes, anatomy and consequences of health emergencies, today and in the past.

Academics often struggle to communicate their research findings to policymakers. We intend that this workshop will assist in creating opportunities for translating academic research into formats that may inform actionable policy initiatives. The workshop will conclude with a public roundtable discussion, involving both academics and policymakers from public health institutions.

The workshop is organised jointly by the Centre for Health Research at the Management School (CHARMS) and the Centre for Economic History (QUCEH), both at Queen’s University Belfast. We plan this workshop to be an in-person event in Belfast. Our venue will be Clifton House, Belfast’s historic poor house, constructed by the Belfast Charitable Society in 1774, and the location of the first trials of inoculation and vaccination in Ireland in 1800.

Keynote Speakers

Guido Alfani
​Guido Alfani is Professor of Economic History at Bocconi University, Milan. He is an expert on the history of plagues and epidemics, and the history of famines. His forthcoming article in the Journal of Economic Literature (“Epidemics, Inequality, and Poverty in Preindustrial and Early Industrial Time”) looks at the past for insights about how pandemics can affect inequalities in income, wealth, and health.

Erica Charters
​Erica Charters is Professor of the Global History of Medicine at the University of Oxford. She is a historian of war, disease, and bodies, particularly in the British and French empires. She currently coordinates a multidisciplinary project funded by the Wellcome Trust which investigates how societies know when an epidemic is over and normal life can resume. Her 2021 article in Centauras (“How Epidemics End”, with Kristin Heitman) sets out the aims of this project.

Maarten Lindeboom
Maarten Lindeboom is Professor of Economics at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. He is an applied microeconomist working in the fields of health, labour and ageing. He is currently an editor of the Journal of Health Economics. He has published widely on the long-run impact of exposure to health crises in early childhood, including his 2006 article in the American Economic Review (“Economic Conditions Early in Life and Individual Mortality”, with Gerard van den Berg and France Portrait). 

Submission Instructions
Applicants should write an extended abstract summarising their ongoing research project and explaining how it relates to the workshop’s aim. It should be approximately 300-500 words. Abstracts should be submitted in PDF format alongside a short CV of the presenting author to by Friday 25 February 2022. We anticipate that our decision on successful applicants will be communicated by Friday 18 March 2022. 

Our plan is that each paper will be assigned a discussant from another discipline. Participants are therefore expected to have read the work of their fellow participants. Successful applicants are expected to submit a full working paper by Friday 29 April 2022.

Queen’s University Belfast will provide accommodation to successful applicants for the duration of the workshop. Lunches and dinners will also be provided. Travel to Belfast will be at own expense, but some limited funds are available to sponsor new scholars who do not have institutional support.

Key Dates
Deadline for submission of extended abstracts: Friday 25 February 2022  (extended to Friday 4 March 2022)
Decision on successful applicants: Friday 18 March 2022
Deadline for submission of full paper for successful applications: Friday 29 April 2022
Dates of workshop held in Belfast: Thursday 26 & Friday 27 May 2022
​Submission email address:

Organising Committee
Dr Aldo Elizalde
Dr Arcangelo Dimico
Dr Chris Colvin