The Amsterdam Centre for Urban History represents the largest research group in the Netherlands for the study of urban history.
With about 35 staff members and PhD candidates, we explore the history of urban societies from a long-term and broad geographic perspective: from Antiquity to the modern era, from Europe to Africa and from the Middle East to the Americas.
Scholars at the Centre focus on a wide range of themes: from urban governance, economy, class and gender relations, to religion, ethnic identity, crime, health, housing, planning, leisure and representation. Most of the research, however, emerges from a basic yet fundamental question:
- how do people from various backgrounds live together in densely populated cities, in harmonious or more antagonistic ways?
The role of institutions and the contested uses of urban space figure prominently in many of our research projects.
Activities and links
The group offers a lively environment for the study of urban history for both researchers and students: with regular seminars, workshops and conferences, high-quality publications, a joint BA course and a range of specialist courses and thesis supervision.
The Centre has active links with the centres for urban history in Leicester (est. 1985) and Antwerp (est. 2003). Members actively participate in major (inter)national platforms such as the Dutch-Flemish journal Stadsgeschiedenis, the national association Werkgroep Stedengeschiedenis and the European Association for Urban History.