Colchester, United Kingdom

Comparative Historical Analysis (CHA)

online course
when 5 February 2024 - 9 February 2024
language English
duration 1 week
credits 4 EC
fee GBP 492

"Learn about some of the key aspects of Comparative Historical Analysis, including process tracing, path dependency, case selection and periodization, and how to design a comparative historical research project.

Need to know
No particular previous knowledge is required, although students should come to the course having already read the course material and ready to fully engage it. It will be assumed that students who have registered for the course have an interest in historical processes and theory building, both of which are central to the logic of Comparative Historical Analysis.

In depth
Introduction to Comparative Historical Analysis: Origins, logics, and exemplars.

Key aspects of Comparative Historical analysis: Process tracing, path dependency, and theory building.

First book seminar.

Second book seminar.

Friday morning
The comparative historical research process: A practical guide.

How the course will work online
At the risk of sounding cliché (or, even worse, flaky), Comparative Historical Analysis is in many ways more than a method – it is an approach to understanding and analysing the social world. Furthermore, it is a craft. Unlike many other methods, there is thus no set of skills and techniques that, once mastered, will allow a researcher to do comparative historical analysis. Rather, each practitioner of the method must learn from the great “exemplars” that constitute the method’s canon.

Consequently, the course will combine live, interactive morning lecture that emphasize theoretical and practical components of the method. The first two seminars will each dissect a comparative historical masterpiece that all participants will have read before the beginning of the course. The final seminar will explore the comparative historical projects of the participants and wrap up the course."

Course leader

Daniel Ritter is Associate Professor of Sociology at Stockholm University, specializing in revolutions and social movements

Course aim

"By the end of this course, you will have a firm grip on what Comparative Historical Analysis is, how one goes about “doing” comparative history, and detailed knowledge of several key works in the tradition.

Upon completing the course, you will be able to design a comparative historical study in terms of posing relevant research questions or puzzles, identifying suitable sources of evidence, and weaving history and theory together into coherent and plausible explanations."

Credits info

4 EC
"You can earn up to four credits for attending this course.
3 ECTS credits – Attend 100% of live sessions and engage fully with class activities.
4 ECTS credits – Attend 100% of live sessions, engage fully with class activities and complete a post-class assignment."

Fee info

GBP 492: ECPR Member - check if your institution is a member on our website.
GBP 985: ECPR Non-Member


Funding applications for the 2024 ECPR Methods School Winter instalment are now closed. For more details on funding opportunities for ECPR's other events, please visit our website.