Beatrice Dedinger

Research assistant
History trade statistics, Historical statistics of the geopolitical entities of the world, History of trade globalization, German trade history

An economist by training, Béatrice Dedinger turned to economic history by devoting her PhD thesis to German trade history. She used to teach economics, economic history and European economy. For the last ten years or so, her research has extended to the building and exploitation of a historical trade database of all of the world’s countries, and more recently, to the creation of a data set of the geopolitical entities of the world. The two data sets are available in open access on the RICardo website and the GeoPolHist website.

Research projectS

RICardo (Research on International Commerce) 

Béatrice Dedinger is the scientific director of the RICardo project (Research on International Commerce).

RICardo was launched at the beginning of the 2000s with the aim of providing the scientific international community with a trade database covering bilateral trade of all of the world’s countries over the period 1800-1938.

In 2017, more than ten years after its launching, the project led to the opening of the RICardo website that provides free access to about 300,000 bilateral trade data and a visual exploration of these data.

Since 2017, the project follows three main objectives:

  1. Supplement the trade database with new primary sources. More than 200,000 new data are being integrated in the RICardo data set and will be published in 2022 on the RICardo website;
  2. Add a political dimension to the trade database by creating a historical database of the geopolitical entities of the world. This led to the creation of the GeoPolHIst website in 2021. GeoPolHist proposes a data set and a visual exploration of the political status of about 1,000 geopolitical entities from 1816 to the present;
  3. Add a geographical dimension to the RICardo website by using the RICardo and the GeoPolHist databases. The aim is to provide the user of the RICardo website with a cartography of trade flows over time.


  • 2019-2022 : RICardo project funded by a grant from the Del Duca Fundation
  • 2015-2017 : SAB Sciences Po project in collaboration with Médialab de Sciences Po: “Viewing trade globalization in the long run: the RICardo project
  • 2013-2014 : SAB Sciences Po project “Historical Trade Statistics Database
  • 2011-2012 : SAB Sciences Po project “Histoire commerciale de l’Allemagne
  • 2007-2010 : ANR project “Understanding trade globalization 1830-2005” (coordinated by M. Flandreau)

Selective bibliography

  • (2021): How many countries in the world? The geopolitical entities of the world and their political status from 1816 to the present, in collaboration with P. Girard, Historical Methods: A Journal of Quantitative and Interdisciplinary History, DOI:10.1080/01615440.2021.1939826
  • (2017) “Exploring Trade Globalization in the Long Run: the RICardo Project”, in collaboration with P. Girard, Historical Methods: A Journal of Quantitative and Interdisciplinary History, 50:1, 30-48. , DOI: 10.1080/01615440.2016.1220269
  • (2015) “Trade Statistics of the Zollverein, 1834-1871”, in L. Charles and G. Daudin, eds., Eighteenth-Century International Trade Statistics. Sources and Methods, Revue de l’OFCE, 140.
  • (2014) “L’Allemagne et l’Euro : les enseignements de la balance des paiements allemande”, Revue d’Allemagne et des Pays de langue allemande, T.46, pp. 261-274.
  • (2012) “The Franco-German trade puzzle: an analysis of the economic consequences of the Franco-Prussian war”, Economic History Review, 65, 3: pp. 1029-1054. 
  • (2006) “From virtual free-trade to virtual protectionism. Did protectionism have any part in Germany’s rise to commercial power? 1850-1913” in J-P. Dormois, P. Lains, eds. - Classical Trade Protectionism, 1815-1914, Routledge: pp. 219-241.

Last Publications

Last Publications

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