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Networks in the premodern economy: the market for London apprenticeships, 1600-1749

By Tim Leunig, Chris Minns and Patrick Wallis

Abstract

We examine the role of social and geographical networks in structuring entry into premodern London's skilled occupations. Newly digitized apprenticeship indenture records for 1600-1749 offer little evidence that personal ties strongly shaped apprentice recruitment. The typical London apprentices had no identifiable tie to their master through kin or place of origin. Migrant apprentices' fathers were generally outside the craft sector. The apprenticeship market was strikingly open: well-to-do families accessed a wide range of apprenticeships, and would-be apprentices could match ability and aptitude to opportunity. This fluidity aided human capital formation, with obvious implications for economic development

Topics: DA Great Britain, HD Industries. Land use. Labor
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Year: 2011
DOI identifier: 10.1017/S0022050711001586
OAI identifier: oai:eprints.lse.ac.uk:32410
Provided by: LSE Research Online
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