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Dr Mary Hilson
Room 211 (16-18 Gordon Square)
Department of Scandinavian Studies, UCL
Gower Street,
Tel: 020 7679 3184
  • Reader in Nordic History
  • Faculty of Arts & Humanities

I studied at the University of Exeter (BA Economic and Political Development, 1994; PhD Economic and Social History 1998), including study abroad at the Department of Economic History, Uppsala University.

In 1998 I returned to Uppsala University as a visiting post-doctoral researcher (Leverhulme Trust Study Abroad Studentship, 1998-2000).

I took up my current position in the Department of Scandinavian Studies at UCL in October 2000. In 2009 I was a visiting researcher at the Centre for Nordic Studies, Helsinki University as part of the Nordic Centre of Excellence: The Nordic Welfare States: Historical Foundations and Future Challenges (NordWel). I was also visiting researcher at the Department of History and Ethnology, Jyväskylä University, in February 2014. In 2010 I joined the core staff of the BA European Social and Political Studies (ESPS) at UCL, and I currently teach both for BA ESPS and in Scandinavian Studies.

Research Summary

My research interests are in modern Nordic history, especially transnational and comparative social history.  My current research project is concerned with the consumer co-operative movement in the Nordic countries, Britain and the rest of Europe during the first half of the twentieth century.  I am particularly interested in transnational contacts between co-operators - the Nordic interest in the 'Rochdale model' for example - and in the role of the international co-operative organisations, including Nordisk Andelsforbund and the International Co-operative Alliance (ICA).

A related project, organised with Silke Neunsinger of the Labour Movement Archives and Library in Stockholm, aims to produce a global history of consumer co-operation in the twentieth century, comparing co-operative movements in Europe, the Americas, Asia, Africa and beyond.

Teaching Summary

I teach courses on modern Nordic and European history in the Department of Scandinavian Studies, and as part of the BA European and Political Studies.

Courses taught by me in 2014-15 include:

ESPS 2107 Food: Consumerism and Globalisation from Free Trade to Fair Trade (autumn)

ESPS 2108 Co-operation and Co-operatives (spring)

SCAN 2108 Nordic Utopias and Dystopias (spring - in collaboration with Centre for Nordic Studies, Helsinki University)

I also contribute to SCAN 7310 Nordic Politics and Society; SCAN 1303 Histories and Cultures of the Nordic Region; the first year ESPS core course and the MA Transnationalism core course.  I supervise BA dissertations in ESPS and Scandinavian Studies and for different MA programmes. 

01-OCT-2014 Reader in Nordic History Scandinavian Studies, SELCS UCL, United Kingdom
01-FEB-2014 – 01-MAR-2014 Visiting researcher Department of History and Ethnology Jyväskylä University, Finland
27-JAN-2010 Adjunct Professor (Dosentti/Docent) in Nordic Studies Centre for Nordic Studies Helsinki University, Finland
01-JAN-2009 – 30-SEP-2009 Visiting Researcher Centre for Nordic Studies Helsinki University, Finland
01-OCT-2007 Senior Lecturer in Scandinavian History Scandinavian Studies UCL, United Kingdom
01-OCT-2000 – 30-SEP-2007 Lecturer in Contemporary Scandinavian History Scandinavian Studies UCL, United Kingdom
01-OCT-1998 – 01-SEP-2000 Guest Researcher Economic History Uppsala University, Sweden
Academic Background
1998 PhD Doctor of Philosophy – Economic and Social History University of Exeter
1994 BA Hons Bachelor of Arts (Honours) – Economic and Political Development University of Exeter
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