Prof Bernard Harris

Head Of School

School of Social Work and Social Policy

Personal statement

My research is concerned with various aspects of the social history of health and welfare since circa 1700.  I have worked on a wide range of topics within this field, including work on the history of height, morbidity and mortality; unemployment and poverty; the relationship between statutory and voluntary welfare provision; and the origins and development of the British welfare state.


Nineteenth century beginnings
Harris Bernard
The Student's Companion to Social PolicyThe Student's Companion to Social Policy, (2016)
History of membership associations, volunteering and the voluntary nonprofit sector
Harris Bernard, Morris Andrew, Ascough Richard, Chikoto Grace, Elson Peter, McLoughlin John, Muukonen Martti, Pospíšilová Tereza, Roka Krishna, Smith David Horton, Soteri-Proctor Andri, Tumanova Anastasiya, Soteri-Proctor Andri, Yu Pengjie
The Palgrave Handbook of Volunteering, Civic Participation, and Nonprofit AssociationsThe Palgrave Handbook of Volunteering, Civic Participation, and Nonprofit Associations, (2016)
Health and historical demography
Harris Bernard
Upside and down and inside outUpside and down and inside out, (2016)
Food supply, health and economic development in England and Wales during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries
Harris Bernard
Scientia Danica, Series H, Humanistica Vol 4, pp. 141-154, (2016)
How many calories? Food availability in England and Wales in the 18th and 19th centuries
Harris Bernard, Floud Roderick, Hong Sok Chul
Research in Economic History Vol 31, pp. 111-191, (2015)
Health, mortality and the standard of living : introduction
Floud Roderick, Harris Bernard, Hong Sok Chul
Health, mortality and the standard of living in Europe and North America since 1700Health, mortality and the standard of living in Europe and North America since 1700, (2014)

more publications

Research interests

I am currently working on a number of different topics, including the following:

  • The availability of food in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century England and Wales
  • The history of voluntary associations
  • A collection of essays on the relationship between height, health, mortality and the standard of living
  • The impact of sanitary intervention on mortality decline (with Andrew Hinde, University of Southampton)
  • A new edition of British Historical Statistics (with Roger Middleton, University of Bristol; Ian Gazeley, University of Sussex; and Nigel Goose, University of Hertfordshire).

Professional activities

Food and Nutrition in 19c & 20c Europe
Economic History Society
Member of History 2 Review panel
Giants of the modern world. A new history of heights and health in The Netherlands, 1811-1940
Social Policy by Other Means: Theorizing Unconventional Forms of Welfare Production
Invited speaker
Comparative history of sanitary reform and mortality change in Europe in the late-19th and early-20th centuries

more professional activities


Scottish ESRC Doctoral Training Centre DTG 2011 | Rawcliffe, Sue
Harris, Bernard (Principal Investigator) Rawcliffe, Sue (Research Co-investigator)
Period 01-Oct-2014 - 01-Oct-2017

more projects


School of Social Work and Social Policy
Lord Hope Building

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