Essay Topics:

Topic 1. What can we learn from the business history of Communist enterprises?

Scranton, Philip. “Managing Communist Enterprises: Poland, Hungary, and Czechoslovakia, 1945–1970.” Enterprise & Society 19, no. 3 (2018): 492-537.
Germuska, Pál. “What Can We Learn from the Business History of Communist Enterprises?” Enterprise & Society 19, no. 3 (2018): 538-545.

Topic 2. Family business in the Russian Empire and Western Europe: similarities and differences

Bowman, Linda. “Seeking salvation: moral economies and management at the Morozov mills, 1885–1905.” Social History 28, no. 3 (2003): 322-45.
Colli, Andrea, Paloma Fernández Pérez, and Mary B. Rose. “National determinants of family firm development? Family firms in Britain, Spain, and Italy in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.” Enterprise & Society 4, no. 1 (2003): 28-64.
Anan’ich, Boris V. “Banking Firms in the Russian Empire, 1860-1914: Topics in the History of Private Enterprise.” Russian Studies in History 35, no. 1 (1996): 6-61.

Topic 3. What could IKEA, entering the East European market in the 2000s, learn from the John Cockerill experience in the Russian Empire a hundred years ago?

McKay, John P. “John Cockerill in Southern Russia, 1885-1905: A Study of Aggressive Foreign Entrepreneurship.” The Business History Review 41, no. 3 (1967): 243-56.
Müller, Urs. “Corruption in Russia: IKEA’s expansion to the East (AD).” Emerald Emerging Markets Case Studies 6, no. 2 (2016): 1-25.
Dashkovsky, Ilya. Losing the good fight: IKEA’s struggle to remain honest in Russia. Kommersant. August 29, 2016. URL:
The Economist. The multinational company is in trouble. Jan 28th, 2017

Topic 4. Industrial paternalism and society: the cases of Iuzovka and Pullman, IL

Kulikov, Volodymyr. “Necessity or Luxury? Welfare Work in the Company Towns of the Russian Empire.” Jahrbuch für Wirtschaftsgeschichte/Economic History Yearbook 60, no. 2 (2019): 449-472.
Lindsey, Almont. “Paternalism and the Pullman strike.” The American Historical Review 44, no. 2 (1939): 272-289.
The Economist. Big business, shareholders, and society What companies are for. URL:

Topic 5. Violence in labor disputes in the Russian empire and the United States: similarities and differences (the Lena and Ludlow massacres)

Melancon, Michael. “The Ninth Circle: The Lena goldfield workers and the massacre of 4 April 1912.” Slavic Review 53, no. 3 (1994): 766-795.
The Ludlow Massacre Still Matters. The New Yorker, April 18, 2014. URL:

Topic 6. Building global infrastructure: foreign enterprises in Galicia and Baku in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century

Frank, Alison. “The petroleum war of 1910: Standard Oil, Austria, and the limits of the multinational corporation.” The American Historical Review 114, no. 1 (2009): 16-41.
McKay, John P. “Baku oil and Transcaucasian pipelines, 1883–1891: A study in Tsarist economic policy.” Slavic Review 43, no. 4 (1984): 604-623.

Topic 7. The accusation is espionage: Singer Manufacturing Company in 1915 and Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. in 2019. What could have Huawei learn from the Singer case?

Sawyer, Benjamin. “Manufacturing Germans: Singer Manufacturing Company and American Capitalism in the Russian Imagination during World War I.” Enterprise & Society 17, no. 2 (2016): 301-323.
The Economist. Huawei is at the centre of political controversy. URL:
The Economist. Toward defining privacy expectations in an age of oversharing URL:

Topic 8. Technological utopianism in the late period of the Russian Empire and under socialism

Josephson, Paul R. Would Trotsky Wear a Bluetooth?: Technological Utopianism under Socialism, 1917–1989. JHU Press, 2010.
Segal, Howard. Technological utopianism in American culture. Syracuse University Press, 2005. (Chapter 2)
The Economist. For the future, look to the past. Workers may need new ways of organizing themselves. Jun 13th, 2019

Topic 9. Improving labor productivity in the Soviet Union and the United States: Stakhanovism versus Fordism

Freeman, Joshua B. Behemoth: A History of the Factory and the Making of the Modern World. WW Norton & Company, 2018. Chapter 4: “I worship factories.” Fordism, Labor, and the Romance of the Giant Factory.

Topic 10. Finding workers to build socialism versus capitalism: cases of Kremkovci and Detroit

Brunnbauer, Ulf and Visar Nonaj. “Finding Workers to Build Socialism: Recruiting for the Steel Factories in Bulgaria and Albania.” In Labor in State-Socialist Europe, 1945–1989 (ed. Marsha Siefert). 2020: CEU Press: 73-98.
Vargas, Zaragosa. “Life and Community in the ‘Wonderful City of the Magic Motor’: Mexican Immigrants in 1920s Detroit.” The Michigan Historical Review (1989): 45-68.

Topic 11. Making socialist citizens: urban development, housing, and social infrastructure

Crawford, Christina E. “From Tractors to Territory: Socialist Urbanization through Standardization.” Journal of Urban History 44, no. 1 (2018): 54-77.
Fitzpatrick, Sheila. Everyday Stalinism: ordinary life in extraordinary times: Soviet Russia in the 1930s. Oxford University Press, USA, 2000. Chapter “The remaking man”:  75-79.
Sotsgorod. Cities for Utopia (excerpt)

Topic 12. Making women: marketing practices and strategies in the beauty industry in the Soviet Union versus the United States

Kravets, Olga, and Özlem Sandıkçı. “Marketing for socialism: soviet cosmetics in the 1930s.” Business History Review 87, no. 3 (2013): 461-487.
Jones, Geoffrey. Beauty imagined: a history of the global beauty industry. Oxford University Press on Demand, 2010. Chapter 4: “Beauty Amid War and Depression.”

Topic 13. Fiat-VAZ versus Citroën-Oltcit: A comparative analysis of East-West cooperation in the automotive industry

Gatejel, Luminita. “A Socialist–Capitalist joint venture: Citroën in Romania during the 1980s.” The Journal of Transport History 38, no. 1 (2017): 70-87.
Fava, Valentina. “Between Business Interests and Ideological Marketing: The USSR and the Cold War in Fiat Corporate Strategy, 1957–1972.” Journal of Cold War Studies 20, no. 4 (2019): 26-64.
Fava, Valentina, and Luminita Gatejel. “East-West cooperation in the automotive industry: Enterprises, mobility, production.” The Journal of Transport History 38, no. 1 (2017): 11-19.

Topic 14. Industrial disasters, uncomfortable heritage, and dark tourism: cases of the Chernobyl exclusion zone and the Berkley Pit

Yankovska, Ganna, and Kevin Hannam. “Dark and toxic tourism in the Chernobyl exclusion zone.” Current issues in Tourism 17, no. 10 (2014): 929-939.
Barry, Bridget R. Toxic tourism: Promoting the Berkeley Pit and industrial heritage in Butte, Montana. An MA Thesis. College at the University of Nebraska. Lincoln, Nebraska: May, 2012.
Leech, Brian James. The city that ate itself: Butte, Montana and its expanding Berkeley Pit. University of Nevada Press, 2018. Introduction.

Topic 15. Can socialism prevent catastrophic climate change?

Bruno, Andy. Can Socialism Save the Planet? URL:
The Economist. A warming world. The climate issue. URL:

Topic 16. How can projects of adaptive industrial heritage be made sustainable in terms of financing and the environment?

Sklokina, Iryna. Jam Factory (Lviv, Ukraine). Observatory Case of the OpenHeritage Project. Lviv, 2019. 32 p.
ExRotaprint gGmbH (2011) The ExRotaprint Model.
Shipwright, F. (2016) The patient history of ExRotaprint, Berlin. Uncube, 11 April 2016.