International Organizations as sites if international memory

2019 marks the hundredth anniversary of the international order that radically reshaped the 20th century and became the benchmark against which changes in international politics in the 21st century are measured. 1919 saw the creation of the League of Nations and its economic and social counterpart, the International Labour Organization, all headquartered in Geneva. This is the context in which we have conceived this project: On one side the University of Geneva, working with the Graduate Institute (HEID), and building on its optimal location and privileged links to international organizations, the hub of a new network for historical studies of international organizations [HION] ( with plans to commemorate the 1919 centenary. On the other side, the University of Sydney, home to the Laureate Research Program in International History funded by the Australian Research Council, which has launched its sites of international memory initiative, and is scoping a new methodological inquiry into the present and future of international history. Together, lead investigators Sluga (Sydney) and Kott (Geneva) will link these programs to draw historical attention to the twentieth century, when international thinking and institutions were consistently the first port of call at moments of greatest crisis, when international economic and social governance was not limited to trade and finance. This is a breakthrough point of departure for the field, setting new frameworks for international history, its interdisciplinary potential and its geopolitical prospects, and timed to coincide with the centenary of 1919.

UNIGE: Prof. Sandrine Kott, Faculty of Arts, Department of History
USyd: Prof. Glenda Sluga, Faculty of Arts and Social Science, Department of History