Naval shipyards: Laboratories of capitalism
Naval Shipyards in the Atlantic World as Centers of Innovation in Production, Administration and Labor Control (1720-1870)
- Project lead: Pepijn Brandon
- Project start: 2016
- Grant: € 250,000 (€ 125,000 IISH) by NWO [VENI]
- Partners: Free University Amsterdam
In 2016 Pepijn Brandon (IISH and Vrije Universiteit) has been awarded a Veni-grant (NWO) for his project Naval shipyards: Laboratories of capitalism. His research focuses on the impact of war industry, state intervention and forced labour on industrial development.
In his project, Brandon makes a comparison between the naval shipyards of Amsterdam, Plymouth (UK), Havana (Spanish Cuba) and Norfolk (Virginia). During the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, each of these shipyards in its own way played a prominent role in the introduction of industrial methods of production.
These large state-enterprises often were technological front-runners. In many cases they employed not only wage laborers but also forced laborers and slaves. This shines new light on the history of industrial capitalism.