Current members of the Global His­tory of Free Ports Research Project.
Marcella Aglietti

Marcella Aglietti is Full Professor in History of Political Institutions at the Department of Political Sciences of the University of Pisa since 2006. Her major interests are in the comparative history of political institutions, with a special focus on ruling class, government practices and cultural debate about representative activities, especially in Spain and Italy during XVIII and XIX centuries.

Her most recent publications include:

  • L’istituto consolare tra Sette e Ottocento (Pisa, 2012)
  • Los cónsules de extranjeros en la Edad moderna y a principios de la Edad contemporánea (2013)
  • La città delle nazioni. Livorno e i limiti del cosmopolitismo (1566-1834) (Pisa, 2016)
  • Cittadinanze nella storia dello Stato contemporaneo (Milano, 2017).
Doohwan Ahn

Doohwan Ahn is an associate professor in the Department of Politics and International Relations at Seoul National University. He obtained a PhD degree in history from the University of Cambridge in 2012. His research interests are in early modern European intellectual history, with a special focus on the birth of the first British Empire. Ahn has published widely on this subject and is currently completing his first book, tentatively titled “Britain before the Empire: Bolingbroke and the Road to the Patriot King, 1688–1751.”

Ahn is working on a new book, provisionally titled “Imperial Crossroads: Great Britain and the United States in the Far East, 1839–1945.” Surveying Anglo-American competition in the Far East at the turn of the 19th century, he intends to identify conditions for a peaceful power transition and possible risks in the process.

Antonella Alimento

Antonella Alimento is an Associate Professor in Modern History at the University of Pisa, Italy. Her main research interests are European eighteenth-century political and economic history, with a special focus on France. She has published articles on the diffusion and translation of ideas about free ports between Britain and Livorno and on the perspective of Carlo Ginori on the economic development of Tuscany in relation to Livorno. She is also interested in the usage of Caribbean free ports by France and Britain in the eighteenth century.

Daniele Andreozzi

Daniele Andreozzi is Associate Professor of Economic History at the University of Trieste. His recent research interests focus on growth and crisis in the economic systems as well as relationship between trade mechanisms, social practices, norms, identities, institutions and economic system. He has published on the history of Trieste and his port and the sea routes and the inland routes that linked the Adriatic to the Mediterranean sea, the Levant and the Continental Europe.

Jesús Bohorquez

Jesús Bohorquez gained his PhD from the European University Institute (Florence). Previously, he was Weatherhead Initiative on Global History Postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University, and since 2107, he is a postdoctoral researcher at the Social Sciences Institute at Universidade de Lisboa. His research’s main goal is to draw a global historical genealogy of free ports in the Age of Enlightenment. He focuses on the ways in which the enlightened political economy soundly revisited free port’s features and history, and incessantly shaped and reshaped Renaissance free ports. The emerging political economy not only conceived of the world’s greatest magazine but also transformed free ports into an imperial global policy intended to fuel global trade. Many attempts were carried and free ports settled in the Atlantic and Indian Oceans. Further, his research analyses how the idea of free ports competed with other apparently similar institution such as drawback system. While the former seems to have prevailed across the Mediterranean, the latter knew a larger impact in England. Free ports and the drawback system made, therefore, part of the same entangled history of institutional diversity.

Guillaume Calafat

​Guillaume Calafat is an associate professor (maître de conferences) in early modern history in Pantheon-Sorbonne University (Paris 1). He is currently finishing a revised version of his PhD thesis, A Sea of Jealousy: Maritime Jurisdictions, Free Ports, and the Regulation of Commerce in the Early Modern Mediterranean (1590-1740), in which he shows the links between the affirmation of maritime sovereignties and the institution of free ports in the Early modern period. He is interested in maritime and commercial litigation focusing also on slavery, corsairing and piracy in the Early Modern Mediterranean, with a special focus on economic and social interactions between Southern Europe (Italy, France, Spain) and Ottoman North Africa (Algiers, Tunis and Tripoli).


Annastella Carrino

Annastella Carrino is Associate Professor of Early-Modern History, Department of Humanities, University of Bari. Her interest in free ports stems from her main research interest in Mediterranean ‘marginal’ merchants communities in the XVIIIth century. Free ports are a context in which groups of foreigners may find institutional and commercial resources that allow ‘week’ entrepreneurs to compete successfully in a complex market. From this point of view, she is particularly interested in the free port of Marseilles.

Manuel Covo

Manuel Covo is Assistant Professor at the Department of History, University of California, Santa Barbara. He works on the transition of European colonialism in the long eighteenth century.  Specialising in French imperialism, his work focuses on the impact of the Haitian Revolution on France and the United States, notably through the French “ports d’entrepôt” in the Caribbean.

Giulia Delogu

Giulia Delogu is Assistant Professor of Early Modern History at Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Department of Linguistics and Comparative Cultural Studies. Her main research interest is eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries history. She specializes on the study of political, cultural and commercial networks, and on political communication. Her most recent publications includes articles (HOEI, Studi Storici and Mediterranea) and a monograph (La poetica della virtù, Milan, 2017) on political communication of virtue and representation of power in Early Modern Italy. Currently, she is working on the development of new communication strategies in eighteenth and nineteenth centuries free ports, starting from the case of Trieste and Venice.

Ida Fazio

Ida Fazio (Ph.D. in History of European Society-Economic History, University of Turin, 1991) is Associate Professor of Economic History at the University of Palermo, Department of  Scienze Umanistiche,  where  she teaches Economic history and Early Modern History. She is a member of the PRIN programme (2015) Alla ricerca del negoziante patriota. Her main research interests are: the economic and social history of seventeenth to nineteenth-century Sicily, focusing on the urban provisioningsystems and the wheat trade, legal and ilegal trade networks in Southern Mediterranean during the Napoleonic period (corsairs and smugglers) and family history and women’s and gender history.

Among her main publications are

  • “Sterilissima di frumenti”. L’annona della città di Messina in età moderna (secc. XV-XIX), Caltanissetta 2005
  • La politica del grano. Annona e controllo del territorio in Sicilia nel Settecento, Angeli, Milano 1993.
Rita Foti

Rita Loredana Foti (PhD in Early Modern History, University of Catania, 2000) is adjunct professor of Modern History at the University of Palermo and an Archivist at the Fondazione Sicilia, Palermo. Her main research interests are the institutional and economic features of maritime trade in XVIII and XIX century Mediterranean, and the economic, cultural and social history of Sicily in the Early Modern Period.

Among her main publications are

  • Giudici e corsari nel Mediterraneo. Il Tribunale delle prede di Sicilia, Palermo 2016
  • Libri e biblioteche in Sicilia tra tardo Settecento e primo Ottocento. Il caso del catalogo di Gregorio Speciale, Palermo 2014
  • Scansar le frodi. Prede corsare nella Sicilia del decennio inglese, in "Quaderni storici", 143, 2, 2013 (with I. Fazio)
  • Il principe e il corsaro. Guerra di corsa e trattative diplomatiche per il riscatto del principe di Paternò (with A. Blando), in «Quaderni Storici», n. 126 (2007).
Lucia Frattarelli Fisher

Lucia Frattarelli Fisher has published numerous works on the history of the port and city of Livorno. Her current main project is the preparation of a monograph provisionally entitled Livorno, un porto mediterraneo al centro della prima globalizzazione (1566-1850), which traces the growth of Livorno since 1575 through the role of merchants involved in long-distance trade and the mechanisms that turned the city into a hub connecting the Mediterranean to the global economies of Europe’s colonial powers.

Stella Ghervas

Stella Ghervas is Professor of Russian history at Newcastle University and an associate of the Department of History at Harvard University. Her main interests are in Russia’s intellectual and maritime history and in the intellectual and international history of modern Europe, with special reference to the history of peace and peace-making.

She is the author of 

  • Réinventer la Tradition: Alexandre Stourdza et l’Europe de la Sainte-Alliance (2008)
  • Conquering Peace: From the Enlightenment to the European Union (2019), and the co-editor of Lieux d’Europe: Mythes et limites (2008)
  • A Cultural History of Peace in the Age of Enlightenment 1648-1815 (2019).

She is currently working on a new book titled Calming the Waters? A New History of the Black Sea, 1774-1920s, which treats the free-port of Odessa as a privileged location for cultural and commercial interchange between Russia and Europe.

Lasse Heerten

Lasse Heerten is head of the project “Imperial Gateway: Hamburg, the German Empire, and the Making of a Global Port” funded by the DFG (German Research Council) at the Freie Universität Berlin. After the accession to the customs territory of the German Empire and the parallel creation of the free port in 1888, Hamburg emerged as the biggest port on the European continent. Combining global and urban historical perspectives, the project analyses the expansion of the port in its entanglement with urbanization processes, German national unification, imperial expansion and global integration. Connected to his work on this project, he co-organized the international workshop “Imperial Port Cities in the Age of Steam” together with Daniel Tödt, and his written a historiographical survey of the current research on port cities for Geschichte und Gesellschaft.

Mallory Hope

Mallory Hope is a PhD student studying early-modern France with a particular interest in economic and social history. She received her BA in History and Economics and in French from Vanderbilt University. Currently she is working on a project on Atlantic trade in the second half of the eighteenth century and French experiments with free ports in the Caribbean. The research project seeks to understand the political discourse surrounding free ports and why France made the decision to open some legal avenues for French colonists to trade with foreign merchants in the later eighteenth century.



Antonio Iodice

Antonio Iodice is currently enrolled in a double PhD program in History at the University of Exeter, under the guidance of professor Maria Fusaro and the University of Genoa, under the guidance of professor Luisa Piccinno. He received his first PhD by the University of Naples Federico II and the University of Aix-Marseille with a thesis about the spread of free ports in XVIII century Europe, focusing in particular on Marseille and Genoa. He is now working on maritime insurances and seaborne trade in Genoa during Early Modern Age.

He published

  • L’istituzione del porto franco in un Mediterraneo senza frontiere, «Politics. Rivista di studi politici», vol. 5, n. 1, 2016
  • Musulmani a Marsiglia. La presenza islamica tra XVII e XVIII secolo, Terebinto, Salerno, 2017.
Edward Jones Corredera

Edward Jones Corredera is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge. His work provides a reconceptualisation of the Spanish Enlightenment by drawing on early eighteenth-century ideas of political economy, philosophy, and diplomacy. He is currently editing and translating the works of the Spanish writer and statesman José Carvajal y Lancaster for Brill Publishers, and co-convenes the DAAD-Cambridge Hub Workshop on the global legacies of the German historian Reinhart Koselleck. He has held fellowships at the Residencia de Estudiantes in Madrid and the Huntington Library in Pasadena. He is particularly interested in early eighteenth-century Spanish approaches to free ports, and the alternative imperial visions they generated.

Megan Maruschke

Megan Maruschke is senior researcher at the Global and European Studies Institute at Leipzig University. Her research is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG) through the Collective Research Centre (SFB) 1199, "Processes of Spatialization under the Global Condition." Her forthcoming book on Mumbai Port, Portals of Globalization: Repositioning Mumbai's Ports and Zones, 1833-2014, examines free port and free trade zone plans during moments of global and regional transition from the British Raj, to national independence, to economic liberalization. This book analyses these projects as attempts by various actors to manage Mumbai's positionality in shifting spatial orders. Her second book project is on the respatialization of empire during the Age of Revolutions (1770s-1830s). It examines how important social questions such as wage labor and abolition, citizenship, and free trade meant rethinking the organization of transregional empires, thereby looking critically at the emergence of the nation as a spatial format within empire.

Patrick Neveling

Patrick Neveling is Researcher at the Historical Institute of Berne University and Fellow in the Frontlines of Value project at the Department of Social Anthropology, University of Bergen. Patrick obtained his PhD in Social Anthropology at the Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg with a thesis on Manifestations of Globalisation. Capital, State, and Labour in Mauritius, 1825-2005. Building on global archival and ethnographic research, Patrick has published widely on the global history of special economic zones in the 20th century and on the limits and possibilities for a longue durée comparison of modern zones with earlier free ports in Roman antiquity, early modern Europe, and pre-colonial and colonial entrêpots. He is currently finishing a monograph on the global history of special economic zones, The Otherwise Neoliberal. Special Economic Zones and the Making of World History.

Luigi Nuzzo

Luigi Nuzzo is professor of legal history at the University of Salento (Lecce). Permanent Fellow of the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, he has been research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History, Frankfurt/Main; Senior Robbins Research Fellow at the University of California at Berkeley; Hauser Global Research Fellow at the New York University and Fernand Braudel Fellow at the European University Institute, Florence. He published in Italian as well as in English, German and Spanish, about the history of international law, the colonial law and the German and Italian legal culture. He is working on a global legal history of Tianjin between the XIXth and XXth century.

Giulio Ongaro

Giulio Ongaro is Researcher (RTD-A) in Economic History at the University of Milan - Bicocca. His research focus is the structuring, the characterization and the functioning of the grain market in Eighteenth century Italy. The aim of the research is to observe the role of state regulation and institutions in the functioning of the market, the level of market integration thanks to the collection of quantitative data (mainly on consumption, production and prices), the protagonists of the grain trade and its geographical structure. Free ports (Ancona, Trieste, Livorno) are crucial junction in this picture, connecting the inland Italian grain markets to the Mediterranean and Northern-Central European productive centers.

Sophus Reinert

Sophus Reinert is an Associate Professor of business administration at Harvard Business School. He studies the history of capitalism and political economy since the Renaissance, focusing particularly on the historical role played by governments in both economic development and decline. He is the author of Translating Empire: Emulation and the Origins of Political Economy, published by Harvard University Press in 2011 and edited A “Short Treatise” on the Wealth and Poverty of Nations (1613), by Antonio Serra (London and New Delhi: Anthem).

Biagio Salvemini

Biagio Salvemini is Full Professor of Early-Modern History, Department of Humanities, University of Bari. Questions about free ports have been an important part of his work on the institutional environment of Mediterranean trade in the ‘age of commerce’. He is interested particularly in the free ports of Marseille, Messina and Trieste in the XVIIIth century. He is currently directing the Italian national research council (PRIN) project entitled "Alla ricerca del "negoziante patriota". Mercantilismi, moralità economiche e mercanti dell'Europa mediterranea (secoli XVII-XIX)"

Mark Somos

Mark Somos is Alexander von Humboldt Foundation Fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg, Senior Visiting Research Fellow at Sussex Law School, and Co-Editor-in-Chief of Grotiana. He holds PhD in Political Science from Harvard and a PhD in Law from Leiden. Mark is the author of Secularisation and the Leiden Circle (Brill, 2011) and over 20 peer-reviewed papers, including a chapter on James Harrington’s plan for England’s European empire with the United Provinces as its free port, in eds. Kapossy, Nakhimovsky and Whatmore, Commerce, War and Peace in the Long Eighteenth Century: Essays in Honour of István Hont (CUP). He is interested in ports designed as instruments of commercial and military expansion based on economic or informational asymmetries caused by their geography.

Koen Stapelbroek

Koen Stapelbroek (PhD Cambridge, 2004) is an Academy of Finland Research Fellow at the University of Helsinki, Associate Professor of the History of Political Theory at Erasmus University Rotterdam and co-Director of the Helsinki Centre for Intellectual History. He published Love, Self-Deceit and Money: Commerce and Morality in the Early Neapolitan Enlightenment (Toronto, 2008) and many articles and edited volumes on European eighteenth-century political thought. For his Academy research project on institutions of trade as instruments of economic integration he studies the history of free ports across and beyond Europe.

Fidel Tavarez

Fidel J. Tavárez is a scholar of the Spanish Atlantic, focused on issues of political economy, Enlightenment, and imperial reforms during the eighteenth century. He completed a PhD in history at Princeton University in 2016. From 2016 to 2018, he held a Provost's Postdoctoral Scholarship at the University of Chicago. For the 2018–19 academic year, he has been awarded a research fellowship from the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation and will be based in the Freie Universität Berlin.

His current book project in progress is titled The Imperial Machine: Assembling the Spanish Commercial Empire in the Age of Enlightenment. It traces how an ambitious group of Spanish statesmen re-imagined Spain's vast territories as a well-ordered machine and devised a comprehensive plan to erect an integrated commercial empire centered on stimulating broad-based economic growth. His future research includes a second book project tentatively titled Empirical Statecraft: The Emergence of an Information Empire in the Eighteenth-Century Spanish Atlantic.


Corey Tazzara

Corey Tazzara is Assistant Professor of History at Scripps College. He received his PhD from Stanford University in 2011. His forthcoming book, The Free Port of Livorno and the Transformation of the Mediterranean World, will be published by Oxford University Press in 2017. He remains interested in the diffusion and transformation of the free port model and is involved with Koen Stapelbroek in an ongoing project on the global history of the free port.

Antonio Trampus

Antonio Trampus is Full Professor of Early Modern History, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Department of Linguistics and Comparative Cultural Studies. His scholarly interests cover European and International history from the 17th to the early 19th century, and the impact of Enlightenment’s legacy in the Mediterranean area, in Europe and in the Americas. He is now working on the international state system by Emer de Vattel (1758) and on a comparative study of the European reception and practical use of Vattel’s conceptualizations of the constitutional state, of the so-called small states and of the politics of neutrality. He is interested particularly in the free ports of Adriatic and Mediterranean area (Venice, Trieste, Fiume/Rijeka)

Francesca Trivellato

For over a decade, Francesca Trivellato has worked on the port-city of Livorno and its merchant communities in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The results of that research appeared in her The Familiarity of Strangers: The Sephardic Diaspora, Livorno, and Cross-Cultural Trade in the Early Modern Period (Yale University Press, 2009), now also available in French and Italian. The book examines how the nexus of low custom duties, religious toleration, and military neutrality that characterized the free-port of Livorno affected its Jewish merchants and their credit networks with non-Jews.


Aleksandr Turbin

Aleksandr Turbin is a PhD student at the Higher School of Economics in Saint-Petersburg studying Russian history with the interest in the fields of global and new imperial histories. His current research is devoted to the global connectedness in the Far East of the Russian Empire in late 19th – early 20th century. It approaches self-identifications and visions of the region that appeared in the space of the Russian Far Eastern territories, predominantly Priamur General-Governorship in the debates over imperial customs policy in the Russian Far East and Manchuria. The history of porto-franco is taken as a window on the dynamics of the Far Eastern society in the contexts of so-called “imperial situation”, New Imperialism and global connections.

Stefano Villani

Stefano Villani is Associate Professor in Early Modern European History at the University of Maryland, College Park (associate professor at the University of Pisa until 2010).  He has worked on the Quaker missions in the Mediterranean and published numerous articles and books in this area:

  • Tremolanti e papisti (1996)
  • Il calzolaio quacchero e il finto cadì (2001)
  • A True Account of the Great Tryals and Cruel Sufferings Undergone by Those Two Faithful Servants of God, Katherine Evans and Sarah Cheevers (2003)

More recently he has worked on the cultural history of the English mercantile community of Livorno.

Richard Whatmore

Richard Whatmore is professor of modern history at the University of St Andrews and director of the St Andrews Institute of Intellectual History. He is the author of Republicanism and the French Revolution (Oxford, 2000), Against War and Empire (Yale, 2012) and a number of edited books and journal articles concerned with eighteenth and early nineteenth century political thought and political economy. With regard to free ports, Whatmore is interested in the debate about turning Britain and France into states with free ports that briefly came to prominence at the end of the American Revolution, in part because of the close links between political economists across Europe and America who were associated with William Petty, 2nd Earl Shelburne.

Victor Wilson

Victor Wilson is a postdoc-researcher at Åbo Akademi University in Turku, Finland. His thesis, Commerce in Disguise: War and Trade in the Caribbean Free Port of Gustavia, 1793–1815, was successfully defended in January 2016 and has since then been recognized as a significant contribution to Swedish colonial history as well as Atlantic history, as it traces the continuity of free trade in the Caribbean under Swedish colors during the turbulence of the French Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars. His current research interests are the economic aspects of free trade in the early modern colonies of the Americas, but is also pursuing various project ideas relating to digital humanities.