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Personal profile


Jim Livesey is an applied eighteenth-century historian. He writes about the cultural, economic, and political conditions that allowed for significant innovation in the eighteenth century. He also works with colleagues in urban development and the creative economy in Dundee to apply insight to transformation. He is currently Dean of the School of Humanities at the University of Dundee, Co-Director of InGame, an AHRC-funded Creative Economy Research and Development Project, and his next book, Provincialising Global History, will be published by Yale in January 2020


Jim has three substantial research projects in hand and is happy to consider research students in any of these areas.

Working on developing critical historical approaches to eighteenth century global history. This work has developed from long-time interests in the conceptual and practical histories of democracy, revolution, economic institutions, and civil society. Some of the latest work in this area confronts difficult problems of slavery and poverty. This work also aligns with the new historiography in the history of capitalism.

Understanding practice in the creative economy as well as in science and technology unites theoretical approaches, conceptual work and very direct areas of practice. Partnership-based work with colleagues in business, civic organisations, and civil society in Dundee is branching out to new work the British Council. The goal of this work is to develop a theory, history, and practice of play.

Irish Intellectual and Cultural History and Eighteenth-Century French History are both exciting fields that exemplify the more thematic concerns of my research. I continue to publish work in this area and would like to develop doctoral projects that place those regions in transnational and global contexts.

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, Harvard University

External positions


1 Sep 2018 → …


1 Apr 2017 → …


1 Jan 2014 → …


  • D204 Modern History
  • Global History
  • French Revolution
  • Atlantic History
  • Science Studies
  • Creative Economies

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics where James Livesey is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

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Revolution Arts & Humanities
French Revolution Arts & Humanities
Ireland Arts & Humanities
Dublin Arts & Humanities
Justice Arts & Humanities
Credit Arts & Humanities
Farm Arts & Humanities
Economics Arts & Humanities

Projects 2014 2023

Research Output 1996 2020

James T Kloppenberg. Toward Democracy: The Struggle for Self-Rule in European and American Thought. New York: Oxford UP, 20116

Livesey, J., 30 Apr 2017, In : American Historical Review. 122, 2, p. 467-470 4 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article review

Berkeley, Ireland and eighteenth-century Intellectual history

Livesey, J., Aug 2015, In : Modern Intellectual History. 12, 2, p. 453-473 21 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

history of ideas
eighteenth century
Intellectual History
Atlantic World

From Athens to Paris: The Legislative Assembly and Democracy in the Summer of 1792

Livesey, J., 2014, Athenian Legacies: European Debates on Citizenship. Kitromilide, P. (ed.). 1st ed. Florence: Casa Editrice Leo S. Olschki, Vol. 34. p. 315-330 15 p. (Il Pensiero Politico; no. 34).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)

The Politics of Fiscal Privilege in Provence by Rafe Blaufarb

Livesey, J., Dec 2014, In : Journal of Modern History. 86, 4, p. 920-921 2 p.

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article review


Moore Institute Visiting Research Fellowship

James Livesey (Recipient), 1 Apr 2017

Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively


Thinking at World's Edge: Irish Intellectual History 1500-2000

James Livesey (Recipient), 1 Nov 2014

Prize: Fellowship awarded competitively

history of ideas

Activities 2014 2019

Risk, Reason, and Play: Provocations Past and Future

James Livesey (Speaker)
22 May 2019

Activity: Other activity typesPublic engagement and outreach - public lecture/debate/seminar

UK-Ireland Collaboration in the Digital Humanities Workshop

James Livesey (Participant)
22 Oct 201923 Oct 2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in workshop, seminar, course

Women in Games Innovation Lab

James Livesey (Participant)
28 Feb 2019

Activity: Other activity typesPublic engagement and outreach - public lecture/debate/seminar

Revolutions Past and Present: A Roundtable

James Livesey (Participant)
17 Sep 2019

Activity: Participating in or organising an event typesParticipation in workshop, seminar, course

Islands of Social History: Ireland and Haiti as Sites of Social Revolution 1782-1815

James Livesey (Speaker)
9 Nov 2018

Activity: Talk or presentation typesOral presentation

Press / Media

Groundbreaking Gaming Research Centre

James Livesey


1 item of Media coverage

Press/Media: Research

Dundee University Launches Three New Research Centres

James Livesey


1 item of Media coverage

Press/Media: Research


A New Promised Land? Denominations, Local Congregations, Camp Meetings, and the Creation of Community in Early Kentucky, c.1780-1830

Author: De Vries, J. P., 2016

Supervisor: Ward, M. (Supervisor), Livesey, J. (Supervisor) & Brown, C. (Supervisor)

Student thesis: Doctoral ThesisDoctor of Philosophy