Dr Iain Black

Subject: Historical Geography

Department/institution: Department of Geography

Contact details: isb26@cam.ac.uk 

Research interests:

Dr Iain Black is a Historical Geographer with research interests in money, banking and the architecture of finance. His work has two principal foci. The first concerns reconstructing the circulation of money and short-term paper credit in early industrial England, with particular reference to the integration of banking and capital markets across space in the eighteenth and early-nineteenth centuries. The second involves a critical (re)interpretation of the landscape and architecture of cities of finance in Britain and the British Empire between c.1750 and c.1950. Together with a major body of work on the City of London, more recent research has looked at the diffusion of British banking culture in the built environments of a variety of colonial and semi-colonial spaces in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean. Dr Black has also recently published a jointly-authored history of the sub-discipline of Historical Geography at Cambridge from the later-nineteenth century to the present.

Select publications:

  • Iain S. Black, ‘Money, information and space: banking in early-nineteenth-century England and Wales’ Journal of Historical Geography (1995) 21 398-412
  • Iain S. Black, ‘Rebuilding The Heart of the Empire: bank headquarters in the City of London, 1919-1939’ Art History (1999) 22 593-618
  • Iain S. Black, ‘The London agency system in English banking, 1780-1825’ in Ranald Michie, ed., London as a Financial Centre. Volume 1: 1700-1850 (London: I. B. Tauris, 2000) 73-94
  • Iain S. Black, ‘Private banking in London’s West End, 1750-1830’ London Journal (2003) 28 29-59
  • Iain S. Black, ‘Africa awakening: Gilbert Ledward, Barclays Bank DCO and the end of empire’ Sculpture Journal (2007) 16 34-46
  • Iain S. Black, ‘Analysing historical and archival sources’ in Nicholas Clifford and Gill Valentine, eds., Key Methods in Geography (London: Sage, 2010) 466-484
  • Alan R.H. Baker, Iain S. Black and Robin A. Butlin, 130 Years of Historical Geography at Cambridge 1888-2018 (London: HGRG Research Series No. 46, 2019)