To really understand the world in which we live, work, love and die, we need to know how our world has been shaped by developments and events in both the recent and distant past. The history courses taught at Wageningen University provide insights into the origins of the global gap between rich and poor, the causes of societal resilience and collapse, the role gender, culture and class play in various societies, the relations between our individual diet choices and collective food provision and the emergence of sustainable societies.

However, history courses have even more to offer. Our courses question aspects of the deep roots of human development by focussing on long-term processes of change. History reminds us that ‘development’ is a process, rather than a condition. And even though the future is in many ways unpredictable, knowledge of history helps to create a better understanding of the dynamics of change. This understanding is a potentially valuable part of your intellectual development and once appreciated, it will improve your capacity to make decisions in and contribute to your future academic and professional life.

History Courses

  • Introduction to International Development Studies RHI10506
  • Economics and Governance in Historical Perspective RHI10806
  • Societal Transitions in Historical Perspective RHI11306
  • Globalization in Historical Perspective RHI20306
  • Rethinking Economics for the Real World RHI30306
  • The Origins of Global Economic Inequality RHI30806
  • Agrarian History RHI50506
  • Sustainability and Resilience in History RHI50806
  • African History RHI51806
  • The making of Europe and the European Union RHI52806
  • Global Migration RHI54806
  • Capita Selecta History RHI50403
  • Capita Selecta history RHI50406

    Theses and Internships

    • BSc Thesis International Development Studies (Economics of Development)
    • BSc Thesis Economics and Governance
    • MSc Thesis International Development Studies (Politics and Governance of Development)
    • MSc Thesis Management, Economics and Consumer Studies (Economics of Sustainability)
    • MSc Internship Economic and Environmental History

    For more information about theses, go to the Theses page or send an e-mail to

    More courses

    Overview of courses in which Economic and Environmental History participates.

    • Perspectives on Sustainability Transitions in Agriculture PAP10806
    • Analysis of a Problem Situation YSS10906
    • Orientation Course BSc Honours Programme YPH11303
    • History of Food Production FPH21306
    • European Union Institutions and Policies PAP21806
    • Demography and Global Population Issues CHL23806
    • Sustainability Transitions: Concepts, Issues and Indicators ENP23806
    • Theories on Politics and Governance ENP30506
    • Politics, Policy Making and Accountability in International Arenas for Development PAP31306
    • Global Food Security PPS31306
    • International Economics: Trade and Development DEC32306
    • Politics of Development: State, Property and Resistance SDC35806

      Open History courses

      We offer open history courses of 1, 3, 4, and 6 credits. The size of the paper and the amount of literature that the student has to read depends on the number of credits. The courses have no fixed themes and the content will be established by the lecturer and the individual student.

      Students may want to extend on themes from RHI courses, or may want to add a historical dimension to themes they came across in other courses and may even decide to bring in an entirely new theme. The open course of 6 credits could also be a good way to complete a history-minor.