Inventing Europe Collaborative Research Projects


European Ways of Life in the 'American Century': Mediating Consumption and Technology in the Twentieth Century (EUWOL)


EUWOL analyzes European consumption patterns in the 'short 20th century', i.e. from 1918 to 1989. Taking the US challenge as a point of departure the project emphasizes both the decisive importance of national appropriation strategies in various European countries and the intra-European networks that have contributed to the formation of specific European ways of life. It focuses on three interrelated areas of consumption, one that is connected with residing and housing, one that treats the emergence of various forms of leisure activities, and one that is related to the distribution, preservation, and packaging of food.

Project Leader: Professor Ruth Oldenziel, Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands

Principal Investigators:

  • Professor Adri Albert de la Bruheze, University of Twente, Netherlands
  • Professor Marc de Ferrière le Vayer, Université François Rabelais, Tours, France
  • Professor Thomas Kaiserfeld, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden
  • Professor Michael Wagner, Aalborg University, Denmark
  • Professor Per Østby, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway

Associated Partners:

  • Dr. Esra Akcan, Columbia University, New York, USA
  • Professor Mikael Hård, Darmstadt University of Technology, Germany
  • Professor Leen van Molle, Catholic University of Leuven, Belgium
  • Dr. Dobrinka Parusheva, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Professor Emanuela Scarpellini, Università degli Studi di Milano, Italy
  • Professor Karin Zachmann, Munich University of Technology, Germany

Further information:
EUWOL website

Back to top

Water, Road & Rail

The Development of European Waterways, Road and Rail Infrastructures: A Geographical Information System for the History of European Integration (1825-2005).) (Water, Road & Rail)


Water, Road & Rail documents and assesses the contribution of new transport technologies and infrastructures to the process of European integration from 1825 to 2005. The main goal is to create new integrated pan-European digital datasets and to analyse these resources to underpin a narrative of the role of transport in long-run European integration. The results of the CRP will provide an empirical basis for multidisciplinary studies on the relationship between terrestrial infrastructures and the European integration. This can only be achieved by spatially integrating datasets of economic, social and demographic variables with transport infrastructure datasets.  

Project Leader: Professor Jordi Martí-Henneberg, Universidad de Lleida, Spain  

Principal Investigators:

  • Professor Sedef Akgungor, Dokuz Eylul University, Izmir, Turkey
  • Dr Hans Buiter, University of Technology Eindhoven, Netherlands
  • Professor Jarmo Rusanen, University of Oulu, Finland
  • Professor Luis Silveira, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Portugal
  • Dr. Francisco J. Tapiador, University of Castilla-La Mancha, Toledo, Spain

Associated Partners:

  • Dr. Ian Gregory, Lancaster University, UK
  • Dr. Andreas Kunz, Universität Mainz, Germany
  • Dr. Ekaterina Nikova, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Dr. Thomas Thévenin, Université de Bourgogne, Dijon, France

Further information:
Water, Road & Rail website

Back to top


Europe Goes Critical: The Emergence and Governance of Critical Transnational European Infrastructures (EUROCRIT)  


There is at present a strong political concern about ”critical infrastructures” partly triggered by terrorist attacks demonstrating the vulnerability of infrastructures. The purpose of EUROCRIT is to put this discussion on critical infrastructures in a historical and transnational perspective. It studies how infrastructures have expanded in Europe both through the interconnection across national borders and through interconnections of different kinds of infrastructures with one another. The focus is on energy infrastructures, particularly electricity and natural gas networks. To discover and examine interdependencies, EUROCRIT investigates both international organisations that have addressed such issues or, in their absence, bilateral collaborations; and system failures, in which largely hidden interdependencies were often painfully exposed.

Project Leader: Professor Arne Kaijser, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm,

Principal Investigators: 

  • Professor Lars Heide, Copenhagen Business School, Frederiksberg, Denmark
  • Dr. Anique Hommels, University of Maastricht, Netherlands
  • Professor Karl-Erik Michelsen, Lappeenranta University of Technology, Finland
  • Professor Lars Thue, Norwegian School of Management, Oslo, Norway
  • Dr. Erik van der Vleuten, Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands

Associated Partners:

  • Dr. Ivan Tchalakov, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Sofia, Bulgaria
  • Dr. Aristotelis Tympas, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece

Further information:
EUROCRIT website

Back to top


Software for Europe (SOFT-EU)  


SOFT-EU addresses the role of software in the shaping of post-war Europe through the tensions between two contrasting modes of computer technology appropriation: the direct importation of applications software; and the development of software through university-industry co-entrepreneurship.  

Writing a contextual history of software allows addressing historical themes concerning Europe and Europeanness in the second half of the 20th century. In the initial era of post-war reconstruction, building a computing machine could be seen as a source of specifically national pride; a decade later, the shift from hardware to software initiatives appeared to present a very different character. SOFT-EU studies what informed this change and what was the role of underlying software standards in the move towards European unification and the Cold War.

Project Leader: Dr. Gerard Alberts, University of Amsterdam, Netherlands

Principal Investigators:

  • Dr. Helena Durnova, Brno University of Technology, Czech Republic
  • Professor Hannu Salmi, University of Turku, Finland

Associated Partners:

  • Dr. Thomas Haigh, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, US
  • Dr. Sandra Mols, University of Manchester, UK
  • Dr. Pierre Mounier-Kuhn, Université Paris – Sorbonne, France
  • Dr. Aristotelis Tympas, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Greece
  • Dr. Jeffrey Yost, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, US

Back to top