About the Society

The History of Economics Society was formally established and held its first official annual meeting in May 1974 at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (after a 1973 exploratory meeting in Chicago). At that time the group was a very small one, but it established as its purposes:

  • To promote interest in and inquiry into the history of economics and related parts of intellectual history;
  • To facilitate communication and discourse among scholars working in the field of the history of economics; and
  • To disseminate knowledge about the history of economics.

The Society now has an international membership of some 300 persons. The annual conference at a North American university runs for three days in June and attracts up to 200 delegates. A smaller meeting with several winter sessions on the program occurs each January at the Allied Social Science Associations convention.

The Society awards annual prizes for the best dissertation and the best article on the history of economics and, in most years, recognizes an outstanding contributor to the field by awarding the title "Distinguished Fellow".

In 1979 the Society began publication of a slim Bulletin, which became the Journal of the History of Economic Thought in Spring 1990, published by Carfax between 1997 and 2001, with Routledge from 2002 to 2007 and starting in 2008 with Cambridge University Press. From 1983 to 1998, selected conference papers were published in Perspectives in the History of Economic Thought , a hardcover series published first by Edward Elgar and then by Routledge. From 1999 on, selected conference papers are published in one issue of the Journal of the History of Economic Thought.