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Dr Helen Paul MA Oxon, MLitt (St Andrews), PhD (St Andrews), FRHistS, FRSA

Lecturer in Economics and Economic History, Departmental Admissions Officer

Dr Helen Paul

Dr Helen Paul is a lecturer in Economics and Economic History and is particularly interested in early modern economic history: the Financial Revolution; Atlantic history; the South Sea Bubble, and the Navy’s role within the economy.

I am an economic historian and studied at Oxford and St Andrews. My PhD thesis concerned the South Sea Company and the financial bubble of 1720. My doctoral studies were funded by the ESRC and I then gained an ESRC research fellowship as a postdoc. My primary interest is in the early modern period from the late 17th to early 18th centuries. My research concerns the Financial Revolution; early joint-stock companies; the Triangular Trade including the slave trade, and Atlantic history.

If you are interested in hearing more about my research, please click on the following links:

BBC Radio 4 In Our Time

The Fable of the Bees

The South Sea Bubble episode

The Physiocrats episode

The Wealth of Nations episode

The Dutch East India Company


The Gold Standard

BBC Radio 3 Free Thinking

The Fable of the Bees: Mandeville’s View of 18th Century Economics

Contributor to:

The First Georgians: The German Kings who made Britain
BBC Four. Episode 1. Presenter - Lucy Worsley.

Invited Public Lecture:

Gresham College Lecture

The South Sea Bubble of 1720

Economic History Society podcast for schools

The Transatlantic Slave Trade: Bristol and Liverpool

The South Sea Bubble of 1720: a famous financial crash

Prospective applicants for ESRC funding for doctoral studies in economic and social history, please contact me or the South Coast Doctoral Training Partnership.

Research interests

Economic history: financial revolution; slavery; naval history; Atlantic history; cliometrics

Research projects

  • ESRC Impact Acceleration Fund Grant (£9900) The Chancellor of the Exchequer during the South Sea Bubble episode was John Aislabie. After Aislabie’s fall from power, he retreated to his Yorkshire estate and build the magnificent gardens of Studley Royal. They are now a World Heritage site. This project aims to help the public understand the connection between financial scandal and treason and heritage properties like Studley Royal and its near neighbour, Markenfield Hall.
  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography Faculty Bursary (£750) The project is entitled ‘John Aislabie, the South Sea Bubble, and Studley Royal Gardens’. It is linked to the ESRC grant above.
  • Public Engagement with Research Unit Funded Project: The Hyde Bridewell
    The Hyde Bridewell project was undertaken with local history group, HYDE900 to investigate the history of the Bridewell (prison) in Hyde.
  • MOSAF Deptford
    This project involves uncovering the links between the Deptford area and slavery, but also resistance to slavery. It is a community-based project, but with academic support.

PhD Supervision

Chenyin Tang (co-supervised with Dr. T. Irvine and Prof. M. Everist)

Funded by the Leverhulme Trust

Western Opera in Maritime East Asia (1842-1941)


Completed Doctorates


Michael Siva (co-supervised by Drs C. Petley and Herrmann)

The Jamaican Maroons: Black Soldiers Fighting for the Colonial Elite 1796-1866


Brenna Spray (co-supervised with Dr C. Lambert)

Funded by SMMI

English seafarer communities in the later Middle Ages: a study in the socio-economics of an occupational group


Maria Newbery (co-supervised with Drs C. Petley and J. McAleer)

Funded by SMMI and Faculty of Humanities

The seaborne trade of Southampton 1772-1815


Alison Daniell (co-supervised with Prof. S. Bending and Dr G. Dow)

From courtship to coverture

Honorary Secretary (Economic History Society)

Admissions Tutor

Member of the Executive Committee: Southampton Centre for Eighteenth Century Studies

Joint Honours Liaison

Member of Faculty Athena Swan group

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Book Chapters


Working Paper

PhD supervision

Supervision of masters dissertations

Supervision of undergraduate dissertations

ECON1009 Economics for Non-Economists

Dr Helen Paul
Economics, University of Southampton, Southampton, SO17 1BJ United Kingdom

Room Number : 58/3039

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