I studied economic and social history at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, the London School of Economics, Harvard University and Utrecht University. I received my MA from Utrecht University in 2010 (cum laude) and my PhD in 2015 (cum laude). In my dissertation I examined the Dutch East India Company's intercontinental trade and its effects on living standards in Southern Africa and Asia, c. 1600 - c. 1800. My thesis won the Economic History Society's Thirsk-Feinstein Prize for Best Dissertation in Economic and Social History in 2016.
My research deals mainly with the consequences of international trade for the distribution of income and well-being in developing countries in the colonial era. In 2017 I was awarded a NWO Veni grant (EUR 250,000) for a new research project entitled "Unfair Trade? Globalization, Institutions and Inequality in Southeast Asia, 1830-1940" in which I examine the inequality effects of trade in Southeast Asia in the long nineteenth century. In 2018, my new book The Origins of Globalization (with Jan Luiten van Zanden), dealing with the rise of world trade and its implications for economic and social development across the globe between 1500 and 1800, appeared with Cambridge University Press.
Together with colleagues from TU/e and UGent, I am director of the research programme "Globalization, Inequality and Sustainability in Historical Perspective" of the Dutch-Flemish research school of economic and social history, the N.W. Posthumus Institute. I am a Research Affiliate of the Centre for Economic Policy Research (CEPR) and I sit on the editorial boards of the International Review of Social History and the Research Data Journal in the Humanities and Social Sciences.
In Wageningen I teach courses in the BSc and MSc Development Studies and the BSc Economics and Governance. I made it to the long list (Best 15) of the Wageningen Teacher of the Year Award in 2018 and 2019.
Email: pim.dezwart [at] wur.nl