Macrohistory Seminar – Erik Hornung (University of Cologne). Roman Transport Network Connectivity and Economic Integration.

Event details

  • | Thursday, May 16
  • 4:15 PM
  • Kaiserplatz 7-9, 4th floor, Room 4.006
Roman Transport Network Connectivity and Economic Integration.

We show that the creation of the first integrated pan-European transport network during Roman times influences economic integration over two millennia. Drawing on spatially highly disaggregated data on excavated Roman ceramics, we document that interregional trade was strongly influenced by connectivity within the network. Today, these connectivity differentials influence cross-regional firm investment behaviour. Persistence is largely explained by selective infrastructure routing and cultural integration due to bilateral convergence in preferences and values. The latter plausibly arises from network-induced history of repeated socio-economic interaction. We show that our results are Roman-connectivity specific and do not reflect pre-existing patterns of exchange.

Speaker’s Homepage