CECCARELLI Giovanni Marcello

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Giovanni Ceccarelli is Full Professor of Economic History. His research interests include the history of risk and risk-management, economic thought and culture in the Renaissance, history of food and marketing during the 19th century globalization.  He earned fellowships from universities and research institutions like, like Princeton, Exeter, Amsterdam, Bordeaux, Huntington Library, and EHESS.

Giovanni Ceccarelli (Milan, 1969) is Full professor in economic history at the Università degli studi di Parma, Chercheur associé at the Université Montaigne Bordeaux, and Senior visiting fellow at the University of Exeter. He was granted institutional affiliations and visiting scholarships from prestigious academic institutions in Europe and the US: Visiting Fellow (2016/17) at Princeton University, Professeur invité (2017/18) at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales, and Farfel Fellow 2020/21 at the Huntington Library of Pasadena.

He has graduated in History from the Università di Venezia Ca’ Foscari (1997), and completed his Ph.D. in Economic History at the Università Bocconi of Milano (2001). He has been granted a one-year scholarship by the Centro Studi sul credito of Asti (2002), and a two-year post-doctorate grant at the History Department of the University of Padova (2003), before being appointed Junior lecturer (Ricercatore) in 2005, at the Università degli studi di Parma.

He took part to three research projects funded by the Italian Ministry of University (PRIN), and is currently involved in two funded investigation by the European Research Council (PI M. Fusaro), and the Netherlands Organisation for Scientific Research (PI S. Go). .

His research interests include: early modern commerce and finance, with a special focus on risk-management contracts; late medieval economic thought; food and retail history with a specific interest on typical products, and food marketing in the 19th century.

On these topics he has co-edited a collection of essays (Typicality in History. Tradition, Innovation, and Terroir, Peter Lang, 2013), and authored three books (Risky Markets. Marine Insurance in Renaissance Florence, Brill, 2020; Il gioco e il peccato. Economia e rischio nel Tardo Medioevo, Il Mulino 2003; Un mercato del rischio. Assicurare e farsi assicurare nella Firenze rinascimentale, Marsilio 2012). He has also published over 50 articles and book chapters in Italian, French, English, and German, among which: “Risky Business. Theological and Canonical Thought on Insurance from the 13th to the 17th Century” (The Journal of Medieval and Early Modern Studies, 2001); “Whatever Economics:  Economic Thought in Quodlibeta” (in Theological quodlibeta in the Middle Ages, Brill, 2006); “Coping with Unknown Risks in Renaissance Florence: Insurers, Friars and Abacus Teachers” (in The Dark Side of Knowledge: Histories of Ignorance, 1400 to 1800, Brill, 2016). He has participated with invited papers to conferences and seminars in Italy and abroad, including major academic institutions like: Harvard, Yale, Columbia, London School of Economics, Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin, École Normale Supérieure, École des hautes études en sciences sociales.

From September 14th, in presence office hours are scheduled on Friday from 11:00 AM to 2:00 PM (Padiglione Feroldi). On line office hours are still possible, but it is mandatory to schedule them in advance via email.

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2021/2022

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2020/2021

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2019/2020

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2018/2019

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2017/2018

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2016/2017

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2015/2016

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2014/2015

Anno accademico di erogazione: 2013/2014


Lines of research

Risky Business: pricing, governance, and integration in European insurance markets, c. 1400- c. 1870. This project aims to advance through collaboration the historical study of marine insurance and its institutions of governance. It will unite leading academics studying the topic in the Netherlands (Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam), Italy (Università degli studi di Parma), and the United Kingdom (University of Cambridge). The network will create and compile a multinational, public database of recorded marine insurance prices from the earliest records (c. 15th century) to c. 1870 by bringing together existing private databases (data already compiled which otherwise may be lost), and adding new data gathered from primary sources in various international archives. Funding: Nederlandse Organisatie voor Wetenschappelijk Onderzoek. Duration: Dec 2018-Mar 2022. Average - Transaction Costs and Risk Management during the First Globalization (Sixteenth-Eighteenth Centuries). This project focuses on the historical analysis of institutions and their impact on economic development through the investigation of a legal instrument – general average (GA) – which underpins maritime trade by redistributing damages’ costs across all interested parties. This will be pursued through the comparative investigation of GA in those European countries where substantial data exists: Italy, Spain, England, France and the Low Countries (1500-1800). Average and insurance were both created in the Middle Ages to facilitate trade through the redistribution of risk. Insurance has been widely studied, average – the expenses which can befall ships and cargoes from the time of their loading aboard until their unloading (due to accidents, jettison, and unexpected costs) – has been neglected. GA still plays an essential role in the redistribution of transaction costs, and being a form of strictly mutual self-protection, never evolved into a speculative financial instrument as insurance did; it therefore represents an excellent case of long-term effectiveness of a non-market economic phenomenon. Although the principle behind GA was very similar across Europe, in practice there were substantial differences in declaring and adjudicating claims. GA reports provide unparalleled evidence on maritime trade which, analysed quantitatively and quantitatively through a novel interdisciplinary approach, will contribute to the reassessment of the role played by the maritime sector in fostering economic growth during the early modern first globalization, when GA was the object of fierce debates on state jurisdiction and standardization of practice. Today they are regulated by the York-Antwerp Rules (YAR), currently under revision. This timely conjuncture provides plenty of opportunities for active engagement with practitioners, thereby fostering a creative dialogue on GA historical study and its future development to better face the challenges of mature globalization. Funding: European Commission. Duration: Jul 2017-Dec 2022.



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Dipartimento di Scienze Economiche e Aziendali
Via J. Kennedy, 6
43125 PARMA