Academic life

Find out about academic life at LSE through the years with this selection of blog posts about both influential and lesser-known academics and students from LSE’s past, and their lives on campus.

Pamela Pigeon – “doing a special job”

On 1 November 2019 GCHQ, the intelligence and security agency responsible for providing communications intelligence to the government and armed forces, marked its centenary. For the first time GCHQ revealed the role of five previously unrevealed sites across the UK in the history of British intelligence. LSE Archivist, Sue Donnelly, investigates the LSE career of one woman destined to […]

  • Dame Cicely Veronica Wedgwood
    Permalink Gallery

    A PhD student at LSE – Dame Cicely Veronica Wedgwood (1910-1997)

A PhD student at LSE – Dame Cicely Veronica Wedgwood (1910-1997)

Despite never holding an academic post Dame Cicely Veronica Wedgwood was a well known and respected historian and public intellectual. “The King’s War” and “The King’s Peace”, published in the 1950s, were widely read by the general public introducing many to the history of the English Civil War. LSE Archivist, Sue Donnelly, investigates Wedgwood’s time as a PhD student […]

  • Staff and students at graduation in December 2006
    Permalink Gallery

    A brief history of Mathematics at LSE – part three 1998-2010

A brief history of Mathematics at LSE – part three 1998-2010

In the final instalment of the mini-series, Norman Biggs concludes his brief history of mathematics at LSE. 
Previous instalments of this brief history have described how LSE recruited a group of mathematicians in 1966 and set up a small Department of Mathematics in 1994. At the start of the 1998-99 session the Department was still small, but hopeful. The Department […]

  • Permalink Gallery

    Harold Cecil Edey’s peculiar one-act play about the calculation of income

Harold Cecil Edey’s peculiar one-act play about the calculation of income

Harold Cecil Edey (1913–2007) joined the Department of Accounting as a Lecturer in 1949 and retired as Professor Emeritus in 1980. And, during his thirty-year tenure at the LSE, Edey served as the School’s first Pro-Director in 1967. Today, a portrait of Edey by Sara Rossberg hangs on the walls of the Department of Accounting on the third floor […]

  • close up of a portrait of R H Tawney
    Permalink R H Tawney portraitGallery

    “An Unpromising Subject” – portrait of R H Tawney by Claude Rogers

“An Unpromising Subject” – portrait of R H Tawney by Claude Rogers

A portrait of the economic historian, R H Tawney, hangs on the 5th floor of Sardinia House. His association with the School lasted nearly 50 years from his arrival in 1913 to his death in 1962, writes LSE Archivist Sue Donnelly.

1950 marked the 70th birthday of Richard Henry Tawney (1880-1962), economic historian and social critic, whose connection with LSE […]

A history of Economics at LSE part two – post-Robbins

In the second of a series charting the history of Economics at LSE, Jim Thomas explores the post-Robbins era from 1961, characterised by the “Americanisation” of Economics. 

The retirement of Lionel Robbins in 1961 led to some confusion over who would replace him as the head of the Department and, observing this as a very junior member of staff, I saw […]

  • Prospectus 1990
    Permalink Prospectus 1990Gallery

    A brief history of Mathematics at LSE – part two 1988-1998

A brief history of Mathematics at LSE – part two 1988-1998

In the second part of a mini-series, Norman Biggs, Emeritus Professor in the Department of Mathematics, gives a brief history of mathematics at LSE. He covers the structure of the department, the move away from the traditional BSc (Econ), and development of Mathematics as a degree in its own right.

At the start of the academic year 1988/89 the Sub-Department of Mathematics […]

  • Arnold Plant, Janet Beveridge and Lionel Robbins, 1920s
    Permalink Arnold Plant, Janet Beveridge and Lionel Robbins, 1920sGallery

    A history of Economics at LSE part one – Edwin Cannan and Lionel Robbins

A history of Economics at LSE part one – Edwin Cannan and Lionel Robbins

In the first of a series charting the history of Economics at LSE, Jim Thomas introduces the early principles of economics teaching, and explores the eras of Edwin Cannan (1895-1929) and Lionel Robbins (1929-1961). 
1895-1929: the era of Edwin Cannan
When LSE was founded in 1895, Economics was centred on Cambridge and the teaching of Alfred Marshall, whose Principles of Economics […]

LSE Law Centenary – a history of the Department

This is the first in the LSE Law Centenary series of blog posts celebrating a century since the formal beginnings of a Department of Law at LSE. The Department of Law was created in 1919, formalising a tradition of teaching law at LSE since its earliest days. 

For over a century LSE has pioneered legal education and scholarship as a central part of […]

  • Bowley and Offord
    Permalink Bowley and OffordGallery

    A brief history of Mathematics at LSE – part one 1895-1987

A brief history of Mathematics at LSE – part one 1895-1987

In the first part of a new mini-series, Norman Biggs, Emeritus Professor in the Department of Mathematics, gives a brief history of mathematics at LSE. He covers the period from the foundation of LSE and evolution of the teaching of statistics, to the creation of the first Chair of Mathematics and a new BSc in the 1960s, finishing with changes afoot […]