Main research interests:
- modern intellectual history (19th century, France and Britain);
- modern political thought (liberalism; civil society and the state; nationalism);
- history of universities; history of the humanities and social sciences
- French political culture since 1789
I am currently working on two projects:
- a series of articles on the practices and institutions of humanities scholarship in Britain and beyond, broadly in the period 1870-1930 - see here for more detail
- an intellectual and political biography of James Bryce, 1838-1922, historian, jurist, Liberal cabinet minister,Ambassador to Washington, humanitarian campaigner. This is supported by a Major Research Fellowship awarded by the Leverhulme Trust, 2020-23.
I am convenor of the research group on Political Cultures, which aims to develop innovative approaches to the history of politics, the state, and public policy. I also chair the University's Research Group on University History, which promotes research in the history of universities. See our blog here. We are currently developing an international network focusing on the interaction between research in university history and current issues in higher education policy. I am also developing a network of scholars working on the history of humanities: we hosted a visit by Professor Rens Bod (University of Amsterdam) in May 2017, and have organized a panel for the conference on The Making of the Humanities (Oxford, September 2017).