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Quantitative History Webinar Series - State Capacity, Security, and Welfare in the Ancient Middle East and China, 12,000 – 400 BCE. [Joerg Baten, Chair of Economic History, University of Tübingen ]
Join this Quantitative History Webinar and explore Joerg Baten's latest use of bioarchaeological sources to study very long-run economic history. This is the first study that explores the welfare effects of the rise of early states in the pre-Classical Middle East. Indeed, this region and period saw the initial stages of development of state capacity in history.

Joerg Baten of the University of Tübingen and his co-authors draw on a large new data set of human remains from ancient Mesopotamia, Iran, the Levant, and Anatolia to assess its effects. They observe that the first proto-states were not able to reduce interpersonal violence and improve health and nutritional status of their population. However, the more advanced states of the Early Bronze Age did achieve this, hence Joerg Baten and his team can conclude that they reduced their predatory nature and switched from rent-seeking to security-oriented policies. This explains the remarkable economic success during the Middle Bronze Age, although increasing inequality might have prepared the dramatic reversal at the end of the Bronze Age.

New comparative evidence -- presented here for the first time -- allows also long-term comparisons between the ancient Middle East and China for the first time.

Discussant: Michael B. C. Rivera, Lecturer, Department of History, The University of Hong Kong

Joerg's co-authors: This study is based on joint work with Giacomo Benati, Arkadiusz Sołtysiak, Alessandra Tagini, Xiaofan Sun, Qiang Wang, and a number of other colleagues.

Live on Zoom on March 23, 2023
16:00 Hong Kong/Beijing/Singapore
08:00 London | 17:00 Tokyo | 19:00 Sydney

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Mar 23, 2023 04:00 PM in Hong Kong SAR

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