CALL FOR PAPERS. EAUH 2016. Session 'New energy paradigms in urban Europe, XIXth and XXth centuries'

Jesús Mirás-Araujo's picture
Call for Papers
June 15, 2015 to October 31, 2015
Subject Fields: 
Urban History / Studies, Business History / Studies, Contemporary History, European History / Studies
Call for papers

Reinterpreting cities

13th International Conference

European Association for Urban History

Helsinki/Finland - August 24-27, 2016



New energy paradigms in urban Europe, XIXth and XXth centuries

CONTENT: In order to explain economic changes taking place since the Industrial Revolution, the concept of energy transition has been increasingly applied by historians, particularly as the energy crisis has become a recurrent issue since the late twentieth century. This concept is based on the assumption that a single energy source (or group of related sources) dominates the market during a period, but it will be replaced by another one/s. It also relates to an issue that has attracted increased attention from historians, that is public utilities. In this regard, in this session we aim to explore the changes that occurred during the last two centuries in the energy paradigm of European cities, and in particular in two of its most significant applications: transportation and energy supply for public and private lighting. The goal is to identify patterns of change that took place in the long run in European cities, since the transition from pre-industrial forms of energy to coal, electricity and petroleum. In the first case, coal gas caused remarkable changes, as it was the first public utility that was implemented in most cities throughout Europe (particularly in lighting). By the end of the nineteenth century electricity began to pose a strong competition to control the territory, which eventually accelerated a new energy transition and had a larger impact on cities. Finally, the transition to oil came hand in hand with motorization. It permanently altered the morphology of cities, besides causing dramatic socio-economic consequences. The session aims to find the key factors that were responsible for the diverging timing in the implementation of energy sources in Europe. Those papers discussing these issues at the national level rather than case studies will be appreciated, as well as those adopting a comparative approach that allows the development of a more comprehensive panel for the whole continent. Approaches on technical, business, regulation or institutional issues related to these public utilities will be welcomed.

Keywords: energy, energy transition, lighting, public utilities, urban infrastructures

Main session (max. 7-8 papers)



To submit a paper proposal, please create a user account on the abstract system.

Abstracts of paper proposals should not exceed 300 words.

Start of paper proposals submission: June 15, 2015
Deadline for paper proposals submission: October 31, 2015
Notification of paper acceptance: December 15, 2015

Important: Paper proposals and full texts can only by submitted online, via the EAUH2016 website Proposals and texts sent by post or email will not be considered.


The session organisers will decide on the contents of their session and will make the final selection of papers. The authors of the accepted paper proposals will be invited to submit the full text (max. 5000 words) to the abstract and paper system. The papers will be made available to all participants of the conference in a restricted web area.

Deadline for full text submissions: August 15, 2016


Contact Info: 

Andrea Giuntini

Università degli Studi di Modena e Reggio Emilia (Italy)

Academic address:

Dipartimento di Economia Marco Biagi. Foro Boario. Via Jacopo Berengario, 51. 41121 Modena. Italy



Jesús Mirás

University of La Coruña (Spain)

Academic address:

Departamento de Economía Aplicada I, Facultade de Economía e Empresa. Universidade da Coruña. Campus de Elviña. A Coruña 15071. Spain



Contact Email: