Main research topics
Economic history, labor economics
Carola Stapper studied Economics in Cologne and Lisbon. After writing her master’s thesis on strikes and inequality, she went on to start a PhD at the University of Cologne. Her research focuses on labor disputes and labor coercion, using history as a laborator.
What is the best thing about your job?
Contributing to new findings that no one knew about before and discussing ideas and interesting topics with other researchers.
If you had not gone into research, what would you be doing today?
I originally wanted to study psychology, but even in that field I probably would have been drawn to research.
Who or what inspires you?
How creatively some researchers approach problem-solving issues, especially when the data situation in economic history is often not as good as one would like it to be.
When was the last time you had to change your mind?
Frequently. Often you realize that you have a rough idea of something that is more complicated in the details than you originally thought, and then you may not necessarily change your mind, but have a more nuanced opinion than you had before.
Which advice would you have needed yourself earlier as a doctoral student?
To go into exchanges, for example, to sign up for talks or attend lunches. Even though at the beginning you might that you have nothing interesting to say, you quickly find out that this is not the case.